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Tueller: Government Delegation Represents All Yemenis

Tueller: Government Delegation Represents All Yemenis

Thursday, 13 December, 2018 - 11:00
Matthew Tueller, the US ambassador to Yemen, attends a military ceremony in Mukalla, Yemen, Thursday, Nov. 29, 2018 (AP Photo/Jon Gambrell)
Stockholm- Badr al-Qahtani
US Ambassador to Yemen Mathew Tueller underlined the international community’s united stance towards the Yemeni crisis and its strong support to UN Envoy Martin Griffiths.

In an interview with Asharq Al-Awsat, Tueller also praised the role assumed by the Saudi ambassador to Yemen, Mohammed Al Jaber, saying that he highly respected the Saudi ambassador and describing him as a confident man, who “offers very constructive ideas and reflects his country’s keenness to end the war.”

Asked about the Yemeni government delegation to the ongoing peace talks in Sweden, Tueller stressed that the delegation represented the different Yemeni components.

“When I look at the government delegation, I see a representation of different regions and parties, and I see a woman in the delegation ... This confirms that the government is represented by those whose voices were formerly sidelined from the future of Yemen,” he noted.

In this regard, the ambassador said that a government in Yemen could not be formed on the basis of one confession or one sect.

Commenting on the current round of negotiations, Tueller affirmed that diplomacy had succeeded by the mere fact that the UN envoy could unite the two sides of the conflict around a discussion table, where the parties could directly talk to each other.

He highly appreciated the UN envoy and the “several countries” that contributed to this success.

On the other hand, he remarked that tension was still present due to the lack of trust between the two sides.

He said that he hoped everyone would start implementing the agreements reached once the current consultations concluded and that the two teams would return after several weeks to continue to achieve further progress.

On whether the Houthis have reached a certain degree of maturity in their dealing with the Yemeni crisis, Tueller said that their political maturity would be measured based on their commitment to the implementation of the outcome of negotiations.

“This political maturity is usually represented by commitments,” he stated.

Asharq Al-Awsat asked Tueller about his meetings with the Houthi delegation. He said: “We held a formal meeting between the ambassadors and a group that included a member of the Houthi delegation.”

“Any meeting I hold is a formal meeting, I am the US ambassador to Yemen 24 hours a day,” he said.

“I cannot fail to pay tribute to the wonderful arrangement of the two sides’ accommodation, which has given informal opportunities for all, by interfering with all parties, in an informal and stress-free manner,” he added.

Tueller said negotiations held in Kuwait were positive although the two sides have failed to reach an agreement. He noted that in his opinion, the talks did not result in any tangible solution because the two parties wanted to achieve more gains from the ongoing conflict. Consequently, nothing has changed during the additional two and a half years of conflict, which only resulted in more casualties and crises for Yemen, according to the US ambassador.

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