Yemen's president meets UN envoy in Riyadh, accuses Houthis of violating truce

Source: Xinhua| 2019-01-24 23:25:58|Editor: ZX
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SAUDI ARABIA-RIYADH-YEMENI PRESIDENT-UN OFFICIALS-MEETING

Yemeni President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi (C) meets with the United Nations (UN) Envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths (3rd L) and UN cease-fire monitoring chief Patrick Cammaert (2nd L), in Riyadh, capital of Saudi Arabia, on Jan. 24, 2019. During their meeting, Hadi discussed with the UN officials the efforts being exerted to solve the country's conflict and reiterated his adherence to peaceful solutions, according to the state-run Saba news agency. (Xinhua)

ADEN, Yemen, Jan. 24 (Xinhua) -- Yemeni President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi met on Thursday with the United Nations (UN) Envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths and UN cease-fire monitoring chief Patrick Cammaert in his office in Saudi Arabia's capital of Riyadh.

During their meeting, Hadi discussed with the UN officials the efforts being exerted to solve the country's conflict and reiterated his adherence to peaceful solutions, according to the state-run Saba news agency.

President Hadi accused the Houthis of failing to honor promises on Hodeidah, warning that failure of Stockholm agreement will not help his country and may lead to collapse of the whole peaceful process, according to Saba.

Hadi pointed out that his government is recognizing and responding in complete good faith to the Hodeidah cease-fire and the redeployment agreement brokered by the United Nations in Sweden.

The Yemeni president urged the UN officials to brief the international community regarding the obstacles and challenges created by the Houthis in order to abort the peaceful process.

General Patrick Cammaert, who chairs the Redeployment Coordination Committee (RCC), attended the meeting and reviewed with Hadi the practical steps he took during previous period and what challenges facing his team in Hodeidah, Saba said.

Cammaert hoped to overcome the recent challenges with the arrival of new international monitors to oversee the implementation of Stockholm's agreement in Hodeidah.

The fragile cease-fire was breached several times by both warring sides despite presence of the UN cease-fire monitoring team composed of representatives from the two-warring factions and commanded by Cammaert.

Last week, gunfire targeted UN armored vehicles carrying Cammaert and his team members after inspecting the situation on-ground and meeting government officials in Hodeidah, but it caused no casualties.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres's spokesman said: "We know that General Cammaert and his team left a meeting and as they were leaving one UN armoured vehicle sustained one round of small arms fire. We do not have information on the source of that fire."

Leaders of the Iranian-backed Houthi group including Mohammed Abdul-Salam, spokesman of the Houthi rebel group, blamed Cammaert for failing to achieve progress in implementing the Stockholm agreement.

"The lack of progress in Hodeidah in terms of the implementation of the Stockholm agreement is mainly due to the head of the UN-led RCC who steered from the course of the agreement by implementing other agendas," Abdul-Salam said on Twitter.

The Saudi-backed government said that the Houthis had started to boycott meetings of the UN-backed RCC, which was set up to oversee the cease-fire, including a phased withdrawal of Houthi forces and introduction of a new security presence in Hodeidah.

The cease-fire deal signed between the two-warring rivals last week in Sweden demanded full withdrawal of all armed groups from Hodeidah and its strategic seaports.

According to the deal, the UN will manage the port and supervise the re-deployment of neutral forces there to prevent military escalation, while local forces will help maintain law and order in the city.

Yemen has been mired in a civil war since late 2014 when the Houthi rebels overtook the capital Sanaa and toppled the government of President Abd-Rabbuh Mansour Hadi. A Saudi-led coalition has been fighting the Houthis since 2015.

The war has killed more than 10,000 people and created a serious humanitarian crisis.

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