Yemen minister accuses UAE of trying to fragment his country

A Yemeni minister has accused the United Arab Emirates of trying to fragment his country by creating separate "regional and tribal armies" in the south.

Yemen has been engulfed in a civil war since 2015, with a Saudi-led coalition that includes the UAE fighting Shiite rebels known as Houthis to restore the internationally recognized government to power.

But the government, now based in the southern port city of Aden, is at odds with the UAE forces based there, their official allies against the Houthis.

Yemeni transportation minister, Saleh al-Gabwani, says UAE-backed troops cut off his convoy on Sunday while he was on route to inaugurate a new port.

He says the troops were part of the so-called Shabwa Elite Force, one of several units that only answer to the UAE.