Thousands take to Yemen’s streets after Shia militia seizes power

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Demonstrators swarmed into Yemen’s streets on Saturday, one day after the Shia militia dissolved the parliament and set up a five-member presidential council, effectively seizing power in the strife-torn country.

Citizens gathered in several cities in Yemen, including Hodeida, Taiz and Ibb, to express their anger at the Shia Houthi militia’s takeover of the government. They chanted slogans, calling the Houthi takeover a “coup,” and demanding that the group withdraw its forces from Yemen’s major cities.

Rebel Houthi gunmen fired in the air to disperse protestors and even beat them back with sticks and clubs.

Security officials also reported a bomb explosion on Saturday, on the street leading to the presidential palace, in which three people were wounded. No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, but there were fears that Sunni Muslim militants could be provoking a clash with the Shia rebels, leading to an all-out sectarian war.