UN envoy: Saudi’s commitment to political settlement in Yemen ‘crucial’

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The United Nations envoy to Yemen, Martin Griffiths, on Monday described Saudi Arabia’s commitment to finding a political settlement to the conflict in Yemen as “crucial”.

This came after a meeting with the Saudi Deputy Defence Minister, Khalid Bin Salman, in the capital Riyadh on Sunday.

Later on Monday, Griffiths tweeted that during his meeting with Bin Salman he had discussed ways to overcome obstacles facing prospects for peace in Yemen, adding: “Commitment from Saudi Arabia and the region on a negotiated, Yemeni-led, inclusive political settlement is crucial to comprehensively & sustainably end the conflict.”

On Sunday, the Saudi Deputy Defence Minister tweeted that he had received the UN envoy and discussed “developments in Yemen and [Saudi Arabia] KSA’s humanitarian response”.

“I assured the Envoy of KSA’s commitment to reach a comprehensive political resolution according to the three references, which will ensure peace and stability for Yemen and the region,” he added.

READ: WHO uses sanctioned Syrian airline to deliver aid to Libya

On 6 January, Griffiths met with Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi and discussed developments in the war-torn country and ways to achieve peace.

The next day, he visited the Yemeni interim capital of Aden and held talks with the new government.

For years, the United Nations has been leading diplomatic efforts to reach a political solution to the Yemeni crisis, but to no avail.

Impoverished Yemen has been beset by violence and chaos since 2014, when the Houthis overran much of the country, including the capital, Sanaa. The crisis escalated in 2015 when a Saudi-led military coalition launched a devastating air campaign aimed at rolling back Houthi territorial gains.

The war, in which the United States (US) and the United Kingdom (UK) back the Saudi-led coalition, has killed more than 100,000 people and pushed millions to the brink of famine, according to the United Nations’ (UN) official data.

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