Leave Yemen NOW: MEA tells Indians

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India has issued an advisory to Indian nationals in Yemen as instability in the Arab country is on the rise. They have been asked to consider leaving the country voluntarily by the earliest available commercial flight.

"The government on January 21 issued an advisory to all Indians in Yemen. We want to reiterate that now, that the security situation in Yemen is fragile, with high possibility of major conflict and disturbances,” said Ministry of external affairs spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin.

"We, therefore, urge and advise all Indian nationals who are resident in Yemen to consider leaving on voluntary basis by the earliest available commercial flight."

The Shia Houthi rebels have taken over a key air base from forces loyal to Yemeni President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi and continued their advance towards his Aden stronghold.

The rebel fighters backed by allied army units seized the al-Anad military airbase, 60 km north of Aden, after heavy fighting.

The group has arrested Defence Minister Major Gen. Mahmoud al-Subaihi in Lahj province, a Shia Houthi leader said.

Hadi fled to Aden, the country's second biggest city, in late February after weeks of house arrest by the Houthi group in capital Sanaa, and stepped up confrontations with the group who took over control of the capital in September 2014.

According to the website of the Indian embassy in Yemen, only about 3,000 Indian nationals are registered with it -- way down from an estimated 5,000 in 2011 and around 14,000 in 2010. Political instability and violence in the country in recent years have obviously impacted the Indian diaspora.

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