SHAFAQNA –Japan has temporarily closed its embassy in Yemen over what it calls security reasons after the Ansarullah revolutionaries took control of the capital, Sana’a.Japanese Foreign Ministry said on Monday that it had suspended operations at the diplomatic mission as of Sunday. Japan has also evacuated all its diplomatic staff to its embassy in Qatar, urging its citizens to leave Yemen. The development comes two days after the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Spain announced they had suspended operations at their missions in Sana’a. On Friday, Italian foreign ministry issued a statement, saying the country’s ambassador and embassy staff are returning home from the Italian embassy in Yemen. Germany’s ambassador and its diplomatic staff in Sana’a also left Yemen on Friday.
Also on Friday, Saudi Arabia suspended its diplomatic activities in Yemen, and the embassy staff were asked to return to the Persian Gulf Arab kingdom. On February 11, the French embassy in Yemen said in a statement that it will be closed from Friday, February 13, until further notice, calling on all French nationals to leave the country due to “recent political developments and security reasons.” The personnel of the British embassy as well as the British ambassador had left the Yemeni capital earlier on February 11. In a similar move the same day, the US closed its embassy in Yemen, citing security concerns.
Yemen’s Shia Houthi movement has criticized as “unjustified” the move by those Western states that have closed their diplomatic missions in Sana’a. “The decisions of some Western countries to close their embassies in Sana’a are absolutely unjustified,” said Hussein al-Ezzi, the head of the foreign relations of the movement. Last week, the Houthi movement dissolved the Yemeni parliament, following weeks of clashes with government forces.
The Ansarullah fighters of the Shia Houthi movement announced a constitutional declaration on the Transitional National Council, which is expected to replace the country’s parliament, dissolved earlier.
The Ansarullah revolutionaries say the Yemeni government has been incapable of properly running the affairs of the country and providing security. Before gaining control of Sana’a, Ansarullah had set a deadline for the political parties to put aside their differences and fill the power vacuum, but the deadline was missed without any change in the political scene of the country.