Hadi and Government resign under Houthi pressure

After a week of surprisingly rapid developments in what had previously been a very slow-motion coup, the political situation in Yemen took another turn on Thursday. First, Yemen's prime minister, Khaled Bahah, delivered his resignation--and that of his government--to President Hadi. In a message later published by (former) Information Minister Nadia al-Sakkaf, Bahah said that while his technocratic government had done its best for the nation,

...we decided today to present our resignation...so that we are not made party to what is going on and what will happen. We are not responsible for the actions of others, in front of God and in front of the Yemeni people. We regret that it has come to this, and we apologize to you the patient people of Yemen and pray that God will sail Yemen to stability and safety.

Shortly thereafter, official sources confirmed that President Hadi had delivered his own letter of resignation to Yemen's parliament (which, in case you've forgotten, hasn't faced an election since 2003. The current parliament's mandate was in effect extended indefinitely by decree of former president Saleh). According to the constitution (which still technically exists, but really, come on), parliament has to either accept or refuse the resignation by a majority vote, which will be held this Sunday.

Hadi's move was widely seen as a desperate rebuttal to 'Abd al-Malik al-Huthi's totally-not-a-coup. The resignation of Yemen's entire executive branch forces Ansar Allah to take direct responsibility for the situation it has caused. Maybe. This, after all, is Yemen. Doubtless there are more machinations going on behind the scenes, and some kind of negotiated settlement could emerge soon.

For an even better summary of Thursday's developments, read Gregory Johnsen's piece for Buzzfeed. Today, Friday, 'Abd al-Malik al-Huthi has called for public demonstrations in San'a in support of his "revolution" (and also against the anti-Muslim French magazine Charlie Hebdo, because 'Abd al-Malik loves to be relevant). Meanwhile, anti-coup protesters who tried to set up a tent at Change Square last night were reportedly beaten by Huthi gunmen. Can't wait to see what happens next.