Talks underway to resolve Yemen crisis: Source

SANAA – Talks between Yemeni political factions and the Shiite Houthi movement are now underway in hopes of negotiating a solution to the country's ongoing political crisis, which could include the formation of a presidential council.

The meeting includes all Yemeni factions that signed on to an earlier peace and partnership agreement, including the six-party "Joint Meeting Parties" coalition, an Anadolu Agency correspondent reported.

Representatives of the General People's Congress, which is led by ousted President Abdullah Saleh, are also attending the meeting, along with members of the Shiite Houthi movement.

Sources privy to the negotiations said that one of the proposals to come out of the meeting was the formation of a presidential council tasked with managing the country's affairs in the upcoming period.

Another proposition was to accept the resignation of President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi and appoint Parliament Speaker Yahia al-Raie in his place, in accordance with the country's constitution.

Others have suggested that Hadi remain in office.

Last week, Sanaa was rocked by deadly clashes between Houthi militants and presidential guard units amid an apparent push by the former to consolidate their control over the country.

Hadi tendered his resignation last week shortly after Prime Minister Khaled Bahah and his government quit to protest the Houthis' takeover of the capital.

The Houthis seized control of Sanaa last September before moving on to establish control over other parts of the country.

The rise of the Houthis has pitted the Shiite group against local Sunni tribes and Al-Qaeda, the latter of which is said to remain active in the fractious country.

Yemen has remained in the throes of turmoil since Saleh stepped down in 2012 following a months-long popular uprising against his 33-year rule.

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