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Iran supreme leader urges support for Yemen’s Houthi rebels

August 13, 2019
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In this picture released by an official website of the office of the Iranian supreme leader, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, right, listens to Mohammed Abdul-Salam, spokesman for the Yemen Houthis rebels during their meeting at his residence in Tehran, Iran, Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2019. The Iran-backed Houthis overran Sanaa in 2014. The Saudi-led coalition, backing Yemen's internationally recognized government, has been at war with the rebels, known as Houthis, since 2015, and has imposed a blockade on ports that supply Houthi-controlled areas. (Office of the Iranian Supreme Leader via AP)
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In this picture released by an official website of the office of the Iranian supreme leader, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, right, listens to Mohammed Abdul-Salam, spokesman for the Yemen Houthis rebels during their meeting at his residence in Tehran, Iran, Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2019. The Iran-backed Houthis overran Sanaa in 2014. The Saudi-led coalition, backing Yemen's internationally recognized government, has been at war with the rebels, known as Houthis, since 2015, and has imposed a blockade on ports that supply Houthi-controlled areas. (Office of the Iranian Supreme Leader via AP)

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran’s state TV reports that the country’s supreme leader is urging support for Yemen’s Houthis against a Saudi-led coalition that he says is trying to “disintegrate” the country.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei met with Mohammad Abdul Salam, the spokesman for Yemen’s Ansarallah Movement, in Tehran on Tuesday. The group is commonly referred to as the Houthis.

Khamenei says Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and their supporters seek to break up Yemen, “which must stand firm against this conspiracy.”

A Saudi-led coalition that includes the UAE has been battling the Iran-aligned Houthis in northern Yemen since March 2015 on behalf of President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi’s government.

The conflict in the Arab world’s poorest country is largely seen as a proxy war between Saudi Arabia and Iran.

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