Ali Abdullah Saleh, Yemens former leader, killed in Sanaa

Sanaa - Former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh has been killed amid fighting between his supporters and their former allies, the Houthi rebel movement.

Officials from Mr Salehs General Peoples Congress party said he died in an attack south of the capital, Sanaa.

The Houthis leader hailed the news as a "great and significant occasion".

Abdul Malik al-Houthi said they had foiled a "conspiracy" by a Saudi-led coalition backing the government, to whom Mr Saleh had made peace overtures.

Meanwhile the United Nations said air strikes on Sanaa had intensified and the fighting was spreading to other governorates such as Hajjah.

The report, by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, said roads had been blocked and tanks were on the streets. Some of the fiercest fighting was in the diplomatic area near the UN compound.

The Red Cross estimates that at least 125 people have been killed and more than 230 people injured since clashes broke out on Friday.

The UN Humanitarian Coordinator in Yemen, Jamie McGoldrick, called for a humanitarian pause on 5 December to allow civilians to leave their homes and seek assistance, and for aid workers to continue life-saving programmes.

"They dont know whats coming next... Children and young people - its terribly sad," he told the BBC.

"And for us were in the situation we cant help them because were equally locked down and we have not got the ability to address their needs the way we should."

 

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