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Yemen Govt, Ambassadors Discuss Geneva Peace Talks

Yemen Govt, Ambassadors Discuss Geneva Peace Talks

Wednesday, 29 August, 2018 - 09:00
Yemeni Foreign Minister Khaled al-Yemany with Norwegian ambassador to Yemen, Oyvind Stokke and accompanying delegation
Riyadh, Sanaa- Asharq Al Awsat
The Yemeni government intensified its consultations with regional and Western diplomatic figures on means to support United Nations efforts for the upcoming Geneva peace talks with Houthi militias.

Yemeni sources close to the matter told Asharq Al-Awsat that Yemeni Foreign Minister Khaled al-Yemany expressed to a number of regional and Western ambassadors the legitimacy's concern of Houthis’ declared intention to throttle the upcoming consultations in Geneva, especially in light of repeated statements undermining the talks.

Sources indicated that Yemany informed the Western ambassadors that the legitimacy wanted to ensure the success of UN efforts to achieve peace in accordance with the three agreed references: the Gulf Initiative and its Executive Mechanism, the outcomes of the National Dialogue Conference, and Security Council Resolution 2216.

Yemany met with US Ambassador to Yemen Matthew Tueller in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, and the two discussed arrangements for the peace talks scheduled for next month in Geneva.

The Minister affirmed the importance of maintaining support to UN Special Envoy Martin Griffith's efforts to create a shared understanding around the trust-building steps including exchange of prisoners, ensuring the supply of humanitarian aid, and resolving the issue of unpaid salaries, according to Saba News Agency.

The US ambassador on his part affirmed his country's support to any effort that may lead to a political solution to the Yemeni crisis.

Earlier, Yemen’s President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi received Tueller and discussed with him a range of issues of common concern.

During the meeting, Hadi hailed US-Yemeni coordination to counter the dangers threatening Yemen and the region, through fighting terrorism and ending the Iranian regime's interference via its Houthi militia proxy which has destroyed Yemen and continues to fire missiles toward Saudi territories.

Yemany also received the Norwegian ambassador to Yemen, Oyvind Stokke, in Riyadh. The two officials discussed the upcoming talks led by UN in Geneva in early September. The Ambassador stressed the urgent need for a political solution to the conflict.

The sources reported that Yemany expressed the government's appreciation for Norway's firm stance in supporting the Yemeni people and its legitimate government.

Observers believe that the forthcoming Geneva talks will likely not succeed based on Houthis’ previous stances during former rounds of negotiations with the legitimate government. On Tuesday, the group renewed its rejection of the dialogue references.

Media sources financed by Tehran quoted the official Houthi spokesman, Mohamed Abdel Salam, as saying that his group would not hand over its weapons until it agrees on an interim government, as well as a presidential body or person to succeed Hadi.

Head of Supreme Political Council Mahdi al-Mashat told a number of local leaders loyal to the militias that his group does not depend on the upcoming Geneva consultations, calling for the recruitment of more members.

Houthis previously rejected Griffiths' proposal for peace in Hodeidah and the West Coast fronts.

Observers believe Houthis would not end their coup because they follow Iran's instructions.

All previous rounds of negotiations have revealed Houthis’ determination to hold onto their weapons while trying to seek a political agreement that will ensure they can impose their sectarian decisions on other Yemeni forces.

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