Jan 22, 7:25 PM EST

State Department reduces US Embassy personnel in Yemen


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WASHINGTON (AP) -- The State Department says it has reduced the number of American personnel working at the U.S. Embassy in Sanaa, the capital of Yemen, amid chaos in that country that has led to the resignation of its U.S.-backed president.

Shiite rebels known as Houthis, who are widely believed to be backed by Iran, now control the capital. Yemen's prime minister and his cabinet also stepped down Thursday.

A senior State Department official says the U.S. Embassy remains open and will continue to operate as normal, although with reduced staff. The official says the U.S. is continuously reassessing the situation on the ground.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the official was not authorized to publicly discuss embassy security.

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