Yemen wants UN intervention to end Saudi war


Saleh al-Samad, the head of Yemen’s Supreme Political Council, in two separate letters addressed to outgoing UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and President of the UN Security Council Vitaly Churkin on Sunday, said that the Saudi-led coalition has been committing “vicious and unprecedented” crimes against innocent Yemeni civilians over the past 18 months.

Samad pointed to the October 8 airstrikes against a crowded funeral ceremony in the capital Sana’a, saying that more than 700 people lost their lives and sustained injuries in the “horrendous massacre.”

He expressed surprise at the UN and the Security Council’s “indifference” toward such crimes, saying the apathy meant that the two institutions were shirking their responsibilities.

The senior Yemeni official argued that the inaction of the two bodies has further exacerbated the sufferings of the Yemeni people.

Samad also called on the two institutions to secure an immediate end to Saudi Arabia’s aerial, naval and ground attacks against Yemen as well as its aerial and naval blockades on his country.

Saudi Arabia has been engaged in the deadly war against Yemen since March 2015. Riyadh’s aggression, which the UN says has killed more than 10,000, was launched in an unsuccessful attempt to bring Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi — an ally of Riyadh who has resigned as Yemen’s president — back to power.

Mohamed Abdel-Salam said on Sunday that any ceasefire for Yemen must be all-encompassing and the Saudi-led blockades on the war-torn Arab country must be removed before the peace talks can be resumed.

Abel-Salam said peace talks would be “a waste of time” if they are conducted when Saudi strikes on Yemen continue.

His remarks came in reaction to the US and Britain’s call for an immediate and unconditional ceasefire in Yemen.

US Secretary of State John Kerry said on Sunday that UN Special Envoy for Yemen Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed would work through the details of a ceasefire in Yemen and its implementation in case the warring parties reach a consensus and move forward with the goal.

On August 7, UN-brokered peace talks on the Yemeni conflict ended without an agreement in Kuwait.

The negotiations between delegates from the Houthi Ansarullah movement and the former Yemeni government had begun on April 21.

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