Yemen’s ruling party, led by former leader Ali Abdullah Saleh, and allied Shiite rebels rejected Saturday a newly formed government threatening a U.N.-brokered deal that established a truce after the rebels overran the capital.
The declaration by Saleh’s General People’s Congress party and the rebel group known as Houthis come a day after the U.N. Security Council imposed sanctions on Saleh and two rebel leaders for threatening the peace, security and stability of the country. The council ordered a freeze of all assets and a global travel ban on Saleh, the rebel group’s military commander, Abd al-Khaliq al-Huthi, and the Houthi’s second-in-command, Abdullah Yahya al Hakim.
The Houthis said in a statement that the sanctions were an obstacle to the political transition of Yemen. The sanctions were “a flagrant provocation of the feelings of Yemenis and a blatant interference in their internal affairs,” the group said.
In the same statement the rebel group dismissed the new government as unrepresentative and called for a new line up.
In a televised speech to the party, which he still heads, Saleh blamed Hadi for allegedly lobbying for the sanctions against him since he stepped down. He denied any wrongdoing, vowing to drop the immunity he was granted if authorities had enough evidence to prosecute him.
Saleh then criticized the newly formed government, saying it was “unrepresentative.” The ruling party then announced it was pulling its members from the new Cabinet, which include at least three ministers.
“We will not take part in a government weaker than its predecessor,” Saleh said.