'Kill him if you must': Houthi minister confesses plans to assassinate Yemen's president

'Kill him if you must': Houthi minister confesses plans to assassinate Yemen's president
2 min read
09 August, 2017
The Houthi minister of Youth and Sport confessed his plans to kill the president of Yemen during a 2014 siege of his palace, it has emerged.
Hadi was pushed out of Sanaa when Houthi rebels overran the capital in 2014 [Getty]
A Houthi minister confessed that he ordered the assassination of Yemen’s internationally recognised President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi.

Hassan Zaid, who holds the post of minister of Youth and Sports within the illegitimate Houthi government in Sanaa, revealed the plans himself in a Facebook post published on Monday.

The comments were said to Saleh al-Samad, a senior Houthi official and the current head of the Houthi government, when the rebels besieged the home of President Hadi in 2014 and placed him under house arrest.

“This is the first time in my life that I confess about advising the killing or imprisoning of a person,” Zaid wrote.

"The picture was clear to me that his [Hadi] departure would cause disasters, and this is what is happening... Abdrabbuh cannot leave the house, kill him if you must or arrest him if you are unable to, for his escape will be considered a sedition and a disaster."

Zaid, who is described by some as one of the greatest Houthi writers, said his reaction at the time was hasty and concluded: “Today, I cannot advise the killing of any person, because I fear holding the responsibility of such an act and I am not in a position of decision-making,” he added.

Houthi rebels orchestrated a bloody coup against President Hadi's government in September 2014, forcing the president to flee to Aden where he established a temporary capital before flying out to Riyadh.

In March 2015, a Saudi-led military coalition intervened to reinstate the internationally recognised government, but the conflict has led to more than 10,000 dead and at least three million displaced.