Yemen Govt. Voices its ‘Good Intentions’ ahead of Consultations in Geneva Thursday

Yemen Govt. Voices its ‘Good Intentions’ ahead of Consultations in Geneva Thursday

Wednesday, 5 September, 2018 - 07:30
Displaced Yemeni children. (AFP)
Sanaa, Riyadh, Cairo – Asharq Al-Awsat
The legitimate government in Yemen vowed on Tuesday that it will set the people’s interest above all else as it gears up for Thursday’s fourth round of UN-sponsored consultations in Geneva.

The UN is sponsoring the consultations between the government and Iran-backed Houthi militias in its attempt to build trust between the two warring parties. These talks will be followed by official negotiations that will cover political, security and military issues.

The government had announced its 14-member delegation that will travel to Geneva.

The Houthi delegation will meanwhile be headed by their spokesman Mohammed Abdulsalam Flita. It will also include a number of members of its branch of the General People’s Congress (GPC).

The militias are attempting to transform the party into their political arm after they murdered its leader and founder former President Ali Abdullah Saleh in December.

Non-Houthi aligned members of the GPC condemned the militias for including members of the party. They interpreted it as a sign of bias to the Houthis by the UN special envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths, which will consequently facilitate their efforts to seize control of the GPC.

They voiced their commitment to the recommendations of Saleh, who had broken off his alliance with the Houthis in December, a move which cost him his life.

They stressed that they will remain committed to this stance, refusing the participation of GPC members in the Geneva consultations. They explained that only independent party members that are not affiliated with the Houthis should attend the meeting.

This position reflects the stance of GPC members inside and outside Yemen, they stressed.

They also rejected “any attempt to drag the party to adopt positions that do not reflect its convictions or serve national interests.

Other members of the Houthi delegation include Jalal al-Rweishan, the deputy prime minister for security and defense affairs in the illegitimate Houthi government, prominent militia members Khaled Saeed al-Dayni and Abdulmalek al-Ajri. Eight members of the GPC were included in the delegation.

The indirect Geneva consultations are set to focus on the prisoner and humanitarian files, the Hodeidah province and the payment of employee salaries.

Partisan sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that prominent GPC member Faiqa al-Sayyed had refused to take part in the Houthi delegation. She had taken part in previous negotiations.

She said that it was shameful to cooperate with the same militias that killed the head of the GPC and is harassing its members.

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