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Clashes Renewed in Aden, Officials Say Separatists Attempt to Topple the Government

Clashes between southern separatists and presidential guards renewed on Thursday in Aden, the seat of Yemen’s government, with at least one person killed, residents said.

Thursday’s fighting flared again and a stray bullet hit a man walking in the street, eyewitnesses and his relatives said.

Yemeni officials in the internationally recognized government described the ongoing situation as an attempt to stage a coup.

Yemen’s Interior Minister Ahmed El-Meseery has said a leader of the southern separatist movement is “fomenting sedition” by calling on followers to topple the internationally recognized government.

The minister said in a statement late Wednesday that the call by Hani Bin Braik, deputy head of the so-called Southern Transitional Council, only serves rebel Houthis.

“We call on the Yemeni people not to respond to such calls as they only want war and only serve the Houthis,” he said. The government had so far practiced restraint to maintain stability in Aden but was “fully ready” to combat any actions targeting the state’s institutions.

An online video showed Bin Braik calling on Yemenis to march on the presidential palace in the southern city of Aden and topple Hadi’s government.

Coalition Spokesman Colonel Turki al-Maliki expressed his condemnation of the “dangerous developments,” saying the alliance rejects any attempts to tamper with the interests of the Yemeni people. He called on all parties to work with Hadi’s government to “overcome the critical period.”

The two days of violence in Aden come after coalition member the United Arab Emirates, which has armed and trained southern separatist groups, said in late June it had begun to withdraw forces from Yemen.

Read: Aden: Fierce Clashes Erupt around the Presidential Palace, 5 Killed

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