Houthi-run authorities in Yemen capital condemn Trump ban

Reuters News
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Posted: Jan 29, 2017 3:09 AM

DUBAI (Reuters) - A decision by President Donald Trump to temporarily ban Yemeni citizens from traveling to the United States is "illegal and illegitimate," authorities controlled by the Iran-allied Houthi group in Yemen's capital said.

The war-damaged and impoverished country in the south of the Arabian Peninsula is one of seven majority Muslim countries whose citizens now face a 90-day ban on entering the United States while the U.S. administration says it studies ways to keep militants out.

The Houthi-controled news agency SABA quoted a foreign ministry source as saying the ministry was aware that such action is the sovereign right of the U.S. government.

But "the source said emphatically that any attempt to classify Yemen or its citizens as a possible source of terrorism and extremism was illegal and illegitimate."

Yemen has been divided by nearly two years of civil war.

The Iran-allied Houthi group has de facto control of northern areas, including the capital Sanaa and the country's largest international airport, while the internationally recognized government is based in the south and east.

An official in that administration said on Saturday that it was "dismayed" by the visa ban.

(Reporting By Noah Browning and Mohammed el-Sherif; Editing by Susan Fenton)