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Houthis say UN to replace Yemen envoy

HOUTHIS SAY UN TO REPLACE YEMEN ENVOY

A spokesman for Yemen's rebel Houthi group said Monday that UN envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed will be replaced.

Houthi spokesman Mohamed Abdul Salam tweeted that the UN was planning to change its envoy in the Arab state, which fell into civil war when Houthi rebels overran much of the country, including the capital Sanaa.

The spokesman did not give further details, but the rebel group has accused Ould Cheikh Ahmed of bias and banned him from returning to war-torn Yemen.

There was no comment from the UN on the claim.

Last month, the Houthi group said the UN envoy was no longer welcomed in the Arab country.

Ould Cheikh Ahmed, a Mauritanian diplomat, was appointed as the UN envoy to Yemen in April 2015, one month after Saudi Arabia and several Arab countries launched a massive air campaign in Yemen to reverse Houthi military gains and shore up the Yemeni government.

According to UN officials, more than 10,000 people have been killed in the war, while more than 11 percent of the country's population has been displaced as a direct result of the conflict.

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