Yemeni Tribal Leader to Asharq Al-Awsat: Sana’a Will Not Speak Persian, Saada is Our Next Stop

Houthi militants man a checkpoint in the Yemeni capital Sana’a on December 2, 2017, during clashes with supporters of Yemeni ex-president Ali Abdullah Saleh. (AFP)
Houthi militants man a checkpoint in the Yemeni capital Sana’a on December 2, 2017, during clashes with supporters of Yemeni ex-president Ali Abdullah Saleh. (AFP)
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Yemeni Tribal Leader to Asharq Al-Awsat: Sana’a Will Not Speak Persian, Saada is Our Next Stop

Houthi militants man a checkpoint in the Yemeni capital Sana’a on December 2, 2017, during clashes with supporters of Yemeni ex-president Ali Abdullah Saleh. (AFP)
Houthi militants man a checkpoint in the Yemeni capital Sana’a on December 2, 2017, during clashes with supporters of Yemeni ex-president Ali Abdullah Saleh. (AFP)

One of the senior tribal leaders in Yemen and member of the People’s National Congress Mohammed bin Naji al-Shayef declared that Houthi militants were “dropping like rats and fleeing towards Saada” in wake of the recent popular uprising against them in the capital Sana’a.

He told Asharq Al-Awsat: “The victory in Sana’a is a victory against Tehran and its Persian sectarian agenda.”

“Sana’a will never become Persian as long as the Arab nation continues to be led by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz,” he declared.

The Houthis are losing their control in Sana’a, whose neighborhoods are falling in the hands of the army and presidential guards, continued the tribal leader.

He added that the majority of exits from the capital have also been shut in order prevent the escape of Iranian militias and their commanders.

“The Yemeni tribes are playing an honorable and historic role in recapturing Yemen from the clutches of the militias,” Shayef declared.

The Houthis are now fleeing towards Saada “like rats,” he remarked.

“Sana’a is only the beginning and the end will be in Saada. There can be no future for Yemen if it remains in their hands,” he warned.

The developments in Sana’a are a popular revolt led by the National People’s Congress and Yemeni army, starting with the presidential guard, he continued.

The revolt is a culmination of a years of Houthi occupation of the capital, where they have spread corruption in every sense of the word, he added.

They have exhausted the economy and destroyed the military and infrastructure, he charged.

They have embroiled Yemen in wars with its neighbors and harmed it until it has reached its lowest point, Shayef said.

“We enjoy fraternal ties with Saudi Arabia and the Arab Gulf. Had it not been for operation Decisive Storm, the Yemeni people would now be speaking Persian and Sana’a would have turned into a mini Tehran,” he stated.

“Had it not been for King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Tehran would have been closer to us than Riyadh,” he noted.

He confirmed reports that Qatar, at Iran’s behest, attempted to launch a mediation aimed at “saving the Houthis”, adding however that it was “completely rejected.”



IRGC: We Will Not Side with any Presidential Candidate

Ramezan Sharif the spokesperson for Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps. (Archive- Tasnim)
Ramezan Sharif the spokesperson for Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps. (Archive- Tasnim)
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IRGC: We Will Not Side with any Presidential Candidate

Ramezan Sharif the spokesperson for Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps. (Archive- Tasnim)
Ramezan Sharif the spokesperson for Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps. (Archive- Tasnim)

Ramezan Sharif, the spokesperson for Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), said on Wednesday that his forces “will not side with any candidate” in the presidential election scheduled for later this month.
Iran will hold its elections following the death of President Ebrahim Raisi in a helicopter crash.
The presidential campaign in Iran kicked off last Monday after Iran's Guardian Council, which oversees elections and legislation, has approved six candidates to run for president, including five conservatives and one reformist.
Sharif affirmed his forces “will not interfere” in supporting or opposing any candidate. He also spoke of the IRGC's interest in widespread participation and ensuring the integrity of the electoral process.
The state-run Mehr news agency explained that the statement referred to candidates linked to the Revolutionary Guards, in an implicit reference to Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf, Iran's hardline parliament speaker who held senior IRGC positions before engaging in politics.
Meanwhile, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei’s policy adviser, Rear Admiral Ali Shamkhani, warned presidential candidates against presenting an “unrealistic” picture of the country's current situation, or promising an ideal atmosphere for the future, and raising the ceiling of people's expectations.