Khaled Bahah, the prime minister of the Saudi-backed “government-in-exile” has returned to Yemen today, arriving at the airport in the southern port city of Aden, recently captured by pro-Saudi forces, touring the city and talking up the return to normalcy in the city after months of fighting.
Bahah became Yemen’s prime minister back in November, but resigned along with President Hadi in January when negotiations with the Shi’ite Houthis collapsed. Saudi Arabia declared war against the Houthis in March, vowing to reinstall the former Hadi government by force.
The Houthis had taken more or less all of Aden in the fighting that followed, but after the two sides agreed to a ceasefire last month the Saudis attacked, allowing Hadi loyalists to seize the central part of the city. Since then, they’ve taken much of Aden and the immediate vicinity.
Abdel-Malek al-Houthi today gave a speech on television downplaying the loss of Aden, saying it was a “limited” setback and noting that the Houthis remain in power across much of the country, saying their “strong position” would allow them to ultimately hold off the Saudi attacks.