Yemenis, Saudis back peace talks

Remigio Civitarese
Novembre 17, 2018

The U.N. envoy for Yemen announced Friday the country's internationally recognized government and rival Houthi Shiite rebels have agreed to attend talks aimed at ending their three-year war, which has created the globe's worst humanitarian crisis by pushing the Arab world's poorest country to the brink of starvation. I have received firm assurances from the.

He conceded that merely holding talks would not end the war.

According to the United Nations envoy, the Saudi-led coalition invading Yemen has agreed to "logistical arrangements" to pave the way for talks including medical evacuations out of Sana'a.

Griffiths announced he was close to reaching a deal on an exchange of prisoners and detainees, in a further sign that confidence-building measures were being taken ahead of planned talks.

"What Yemen needs is peace", said WFP executive director David Beasley.

In the House, Democratic lawmakers voiced frustration Wednesday after Republican leaders blocked debate on a resolution that would direct the president to end the U.S. military's support of Saudi-led forces within 30 days, and until Congress authorises such support.

The Security Council is set to discuss Yemen's conflict and the humanitarian crisis this evening (8pm United Kingdom time).

The UK and the U.S. have sold more than $12bn-worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia since Riyadh intervened in the war in 2015.

Britain and the United States supply arms to Saudi Arabia - a relationship that has caused concern because of civilian casualties in coalition airstrikes in Yemen.

"When coup fighters prepared to storm the capital, Sanaa, there was a defening silence from the worldwide community". AFP news agency puts the death toll estimate at 600.

British U.N. Ambassador Karen Pierce said she would give the 15-member council a draft resolution on Monday that would enshrine five requests made by U.N. aid chief Mark Lowcock, one of which was for a truce around infrastructure and facilities on which the aid operation and commercial importers rely.

Back from a recent visit to Yemen, the head of the UN World Food Programme warned that the country faced a full-blown starvation in around six months.

He said he saw children who were "skin and bones" dying in hospitals that did not have the capacity to care for them. Amnesty has previously warned that a serious interruption to the port's operations would further exacerbate what is already the world's worst humanitarian crisis, with 14 million people - half the population - teetering on the brink of starvation. "Nothing there", he added.

The conflict in Yemen began with the 2014 takeover of the capital of Sanaa by the Iranian-backed Houthis, which toppled the government of Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi.

The Houthis now rule over most of Yemen's population, while the exiled government controls a section of the south. The Saudi-led coalition has ordered a halt in a log-running offensive against the Houthis in Hudaida, sources said on Thursday. The coalition had also carried out more than 200 air raids in the last two weeks.

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