Sanaa: Shiite Huthi rebels in Yemen formed Tuesday a "national salvation" government to rival the internationally recognised administration of President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi.
The cabinet led by Abdel Aziz Ben Habtoor, who was named on Sunday to form a government in rebel-held Sanaa, will have 27 ministers, the rebel`s "supreme political council" said in a statement.
The council was created in July by the Huthis and the party of former president Ali Abdullah Saleh.
Ben Habtoor is a former governor of the southern port city of Aden and a member of the political bureau of Saleh`s General People`s Congress.
Abu Bakr al-Kerbi, a former foreign minister of Yemen and member of Saleh`s party, will head the foreign ministry while the defence ministry was given to General Hussein Khayran, who held the same portfolio in the Huthis` revolutionary committee.
The rebel government also includes five women -- a number never seen before in Yemen -- as well as representatives of southern separatists and ministers considered independents.
The rebel announcement of a rival government is likely to further complicate the prospects of a political settlement in Yemen.
In early August, UN-backed peace talks in Kuwait between Yemen`s warring parties were suspended.
The United Nations says the conflict has killed more than 6,600 people and displaced at least three million since a Saudi-led Arab coalition backing Hadi`s government launched operations in March 2015.
Since then, the rebels have been pushed out of much of Yemen`s south, but they still control nearly all of the country`s Red Sea coast as well as swathes of territory around the capital Sanaa.