Tensions between Saleh and the Houthis is at an unprecedented high. REUTERS/Naif Rahma
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An alliance between Houthi rebels and Yemen strongman Ali Abdullah Saleh that jointly controls the capital Sanaa has begun to unravel, threatening to further splinter a country already ravaged by war.Tension between Saleh and the Houthis is at an unprecedented high, threatening an unlikely alliance that has long been viewed as tactical at best.Saleh's history with the rebels is long and complicated.By 2016, Saleh had reached a power-sharing pact with the rebels and ran a parallel government from Sanaa in an alliance insiders and analysts have long warned would not last.Saleh and the Houthis have had a tacit agreement in sharing Sanaa: The ex-president lacks the muscle the rebels can provide, and Saleh's structural and popular power in the capital is unparalleled.This, coupled with reports that Saudi Arabia is looking to cut back on its involvement in the Yemen war, may spell the end of what analyst Baron calls an "alliance of convenience" between Saleh and the Houthis.
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