Houthis set $93,000 bounty on President Hadi
Armed Yemeni Shiite Houthi anti-government rebels sit in the back of a pick-up truck as they drive near the state television compound in the capital of Sana’a, September 21, 2014. (AFP/Mohammed Huwais)
The Shiite Houthi group has offered a 20-million-Yemeni-riyal bounty (roughly $93,000) for the arrest of President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi, the news service of Yemen's Defense Ministry has said.
"A reward of 20 million Yemeni riyals will be given to anyone who arrests Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi," the service said in a text message.
Sources close to Hadi said he was still in the southern province of Aden, despite the advance of Houthi militants towards the province.
"Hadi is still in Aden," one source told The Anadolu Agency on condition of anonymity, dismissing reports that the embattled leader had fled the city in the face of the Houthi advance.
Yemen has remained in a state of chaos since last September, when the Houthis took over Sanaa, from which they have since sought to extend their control to other parts of the country.
Late last month, Hadi fled Sanaa – where he had been under house arrest by the Houthis for weeks – to Aden.
Upon his arrival in the southern city, Hadi dismissed as "null" and "illegitimate" all recently-issued Houthi decrees. He also wrote to Yemen's parliament, withdrawing a resignation he had tendered earlier.
The Houthis, meanwhile, issued what they described as a constitutional declaration dissolving parliament and establishing a 551-member transitional council.
The declaration, however, was rejected by most of Yemen's political forces – along with some neighboring Gulf countries – which described it as a coup against constitutional legitimacy.