UN Envoy to Yemen Meets Legitimate Govt. Official in Riyadh

Wednesday, 26 June, 2019 - 18:30
Asharq Al-Awsat

United Nations envoy Martin Griffiths held talks in Riyadh on Wednesday with Yemeni Vice President Ali Mohsen in a bid to repair strained ties with Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi, who had accused him of bias towards the Iran-backed Houthi militias.

Griffiths held what he called "productive meetings" with Mohsen in the Saudi capital, according to a UN statement, after Hadi's scathing criticism last month.

"I was encouraged by the openness and flexibility of the government of Yemen and its continued commitment towards achieving peace," Griffiths was quoted as saying in the statement.

Hadi has accused Griffiths of siding with the Houthis and offering them guarantees to stay in western Hodeidah province and its ports, telling UN chief Antonio Guterres in a letter last month that he "can no longer accept these offenses" by the envoy.

The president has taken issue with Griffiths over the Houthi handover last month of ports to a "coast guard" that the government says is in fact militants in different uniforms.

The dispute threatened to derail fragile efforts to implement a hard-won Hodeidah ceasefire agreed in December in Sweden.

In his meeting with Mohsen, Griffiths "discussed steps needed to move forward with the peace process in Yemen", according to the UN statement.

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