Yemen rivals sign deal to form salvation government

U.N. envoy says president Hadi and his cabinet were effectively under house arrest

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Yemeni rivals agreed on Monday to form a salvation national government, according to reports coming from Sanaa, Al Arabiya News Channel reported.

U.N. envoy Jamel Benomar had earlier met with leaders of Shiite Houthi militia who seized the presidential palace last week, plunging the impoverished Arab country deeper into crisis.

The meeting was among a series of talks that the Moroccan diplomat was holding in Sanaa to try to broker an agreement after Western-backed President Abdrabuh Mansur Hadi resigned, U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric told reporters.

“He has been convening and chairing daily meetings with 16 political parties in order to build consensus on a way forward,” Dujarric said.

Benomar briefed the Security Council by video link from Sanaa, telling the 15 members that the country was on edge, with the Huthis firmly in control in Sanaa, according to two diplomats who attended the session.

Benomar said Hadi and his cabinet were effectively under house arrest and that violence could erupt at any time, but he added that a power-sharing deal "was possible," the diplomats said.

The envoy was also in touch with Gulf countries which have come out in strong support of Hadi, whose resignation on Thursday has yet to be endorsed by the parliament.

The crisis has raised fears that Yemen, which lies next to oil-rich Saudi Arabia, could become a failed stated.

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