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Former Yemeni President Saleh Offers Talks To Saudi-Led Coalition

Yemenis check the aftermath of an air strike on the Sahar district of the northern Yemeni governorate of Saada on November 1.

Former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh said he was open to talks with the Saudi-led coalition fighting Iran-backed Huthi rebels, as his supporters fought the rebels in the capital, Sana’a.

In a televised speech on December 2, Saleh called on the Saudi-led coalition to pave the way for an end to almost three years of war by stopping attacks and lifting a siege on the country.

The offer came as clashes between Saleh loyalists and rebel fighters intensified in Sana’a.

The violence has left at least 40 fighters dead or wounded since November 29, rebel chief Abdul Malik al-Huthi said.

The two groups have been fighting the government of current President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi, who is backed by the Saudi-led coalition, for nearly three years.

The coalition imposed a total blockade on Yemen after a rebel missile was shot down near Riyadh. The Saudis blamed Iran for providing the missile to the rebels

In 2011, Yemen fell into chaos after an uprising deposed Saleh.

Based on reporting by AFP, BBC, and dpa