Saudi-Led Coalition, Houthis Reportedly Held Indirect Talks to End War
Yemen’s Ansar Allah movement, also known as the Houthis, sees positive signs in negotiations with Saudi Arabia on settling the conflict in the country, but is not confident in their success, Ali Quhum, a member of the movement’s political administration, told Sputnik on Friday.
He said that Ansar Allah and Riyadh were holding indirect talks mediated by Oman. The negotiations are aimed at ending the civil war and the Saudi-led coalition’s military operation in Yemen.
“There are initial, in some way positive, signs [in the talks],” Quhum said.
A similar information has been shared by the Reuters news agency earlier in the day, which reported, citing two diplomats and two Yemeni officials, that Saudi officials met with the Houthi representatives as a part of their effort to counter the influence of Iran in the region and stop the ongoing conflict.
As the media outlet explained, the Saudi-led coalition’s actions based on the aim to curb Iran’s alleged pulling power in the region, connected, as Saudis assume, to the alleged ties between Iran and Houthis, denied by both sides. The Yemeni movement insists that they aim is the fight against the country’s corrupt lawmakers and Gulf states as a vassal to the West.
Negotiations With Saudi Arabia
According to Quhum, despite positive signs, the movement does not believe in negotiations with Saudi Arabia. He noted that Riyadh was trying to buy some time, but it does not intend to lift the blockade, nor to cease its intervention in Yemen’s civil war.
Quhum highlighted that reopening Yemen’s ports, including Hudaydah located on the Red Sea, had been addressed during the talks, adding that the parties had not yet agreed on any points.
The conflict between the Houthi movement and the government headed by Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi began in 2015. The Saudi-led coalition has been carrying out airstrikes in Yemen in support of Hadi, but the campaign has been condemned by watchdogs over civilian casualties.