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Yemen to Hold Parliamentary Session, End Houthi Institutional Takeover

Yemen to Hold Parliamentary Session, End Houthi Institutional Takeover

Friday, 12 April, 2019 - 10:15
House of Representatives. Asharq Al-Awsat
Aden - Ali Rabih
Houthi militias, after spearheading a nationwide coup in 2014, have sought to subdue state institutions with their first move being the dissolution of the nation’s parliament.

But it wasn’t long before the Iran-backed group had an approach rethink and joined forces with the late president Ali Abdallah Saleh to revive the state body with the promise of securing a constitutional green light for its conduct.

However, today’s developments show that Houthi ambitions have hit a serious snag as its rival, the internationally-recognized Yemeni government headed by President Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi, having secured the majority of seats in the legislative body.

With a quorum-ensuring majority, Hadi’s government is slated to hold the first parliamentary session since 2014 in Seiyun, Hadramaut governorate’s second largest city. The last parliamentary session, with only 50 lawmakers attending, was held in the insurgency stronghold of Sanaa.

The decision to resume legislation sessions comes as a counteractive move against the Houthis’ latest attempt to carry out illegitimate by-elections in areas under its control with the goal of appointing 20 loyalists as deputies.

Seiyun’s special parliamentary session next Saturday will be attended by 136 pro-government lawmakers, out of a total of 267 who remain alive to this day, insider sources told Asharq Al-Awsat.

Meanwhile, 100 lawmakers alongside Yahya Ali al-Raee, the current speaker of the Yemeni House of Representatives, who remain under Houthi-imposed house arrest in Sanaa, will not be able to make it to the session.

The 136 deputies from different blocs had an introductory meeting last Tuesday in Seiyun and agreed upon forming a new presiding board for the parliament.

Serving a deafening blow to the insurgency, resumed parliament sessions prompted coup militiamen to raid the houses of deputies in Sanaa. After stealing assets, Houthis forcibly evicted the relatives, including women and children, from the residences.

Nevertheless, with the Arab Coalition’s backing, the session is expected to be held on schedule, revitalizing the country’s executive, legislative and judicial branches in liberated areas. Coalition forces had arrived in Seiyun earlier this week to secure the area where the parliament is supposed to hold its sessions.

The Coalition states vowed logistical support for the Yemeni parliament to hold its sessions from Hadramaut province through providing all the needs for the members of parliament, including accommodation.

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