New conditions for Yemeni Houthis to implement Hodeida agreement

Sana'a (Debriefer)
2019-05-07 | Since 3 Month

A meeting between Mahdi al-Mashat and Martin Griffit

اضغط هنا لقراءة الخبر بالعربية

According to informed political sources in Sanaa, Abdulmalik al-Houthi linked implementing the Sweden agreement to new conditions.

According to Al-Arabia TV and Al-Sharq al-Awsat informed political sources in Sanaa said on Monday that "Houthi leader, Abdulmalek al-Houthi, told Griffiths that he agrees to implement the first phase of the redeployment plan in the two ports of Ras Isa and Salif on condition that the Houthis are allowed to keep their militias in control of security and administrative affairs there.”

He also asked the envoy to facilitate the group’s selling of oil stored in the Safir tanker in Ras Isa and to annul a decision by the legitimate government to limit illegal oil trade in Yemen.

In addition, Abdulmalik al-Houthi stressed the importance of facilitating the return of al-Maori’s body from Beirut to Yemen.

Houthi also called for a halt to the central bank's procedures in Aden to regulate the issuance of import licenses and bank credits for traders supplying fuel, commodities and foodstuffs through the port of Hodeida.

Griffiths met in Sanaa during the past two days a number of leaders of the Houthis, including Mahdi al-Mashat, head of the so-called Supreme Political Council established by the group to manage the areas under its control.

According to the group's media, the Houthi leader criticized the United Nations and said that its positions are painful and non-neutral and in line with the whims of the coalition countries, demanding "the United Nations to take a declared position condemning the violations of the Arab countries of aggression (the Arab Coalition) of the Hodeida agreement and not remain indifferent to the escalation of violations of the cease-fire agreement.

The Houthis vowed to respond to economic measures taken by the internationally recognized Yemeni government, which they described as "hostile.".

According to presiden al-Mashat, Houthi-run Yemeni "Saba" news agency reported that there were "painful steps and options to take" if those actions are not undone.

He added that his group is in a position to make it more powerful and go through those options, but it has been restrained; accusing the US ambassador to Yemen by leading "economic war" saying: "Silence is no longer possible."

Earlier, Yemeni sources said the Houthis group was late in responding to the plan of  head of the Coordination Committee for Redeployment, General Michael Lollesgaard on the final plan for redeployment, which was scheduled for April 29 last before finally responding negatively to the plan.

Observers believe that if Griffiths and Lollesgaard do not reach an optimal formula agreed upon by the internationally recognized "legitimate" government and the Houthis on the administration and security functions of Hodeida and its ports, this will lead to a deadlock in the military solution.

The "legitimate" government believes that the essence of the Swedish agreement is the withdrawal of the Houthis from Hodeida and its ports and the restoration of administrative and security conditions until before 2014, including the existence of local authority, an interpretation rejected by the Houthis.

Yemen has been racked by bloody conflict between the government and Houthis who have taken over Sana'a the capital and most populated areas in the north since late in 2014, triggering what the UN calls the world's worst humanitarian crisis.

Yemen 4-year war has left most of the population in need for a type of humanitarian aid and immediate protection, including 14 million people risking famine and some 1.8 million children suffering malnutrition.

Parties to the 4-year war in Yemen, after 8-day peace talks in Sweden, reached on the 13th of last December an agreement providing for ceasefire in Hodeida and redeployment of both sides' forces, exchanging prisoners and alleviating blockade imposed by Houthis on Taiz.

But none of this has taken place so far, with both sides trading blames for trying to thwart the deal.

The Red Sea city of Hodeida and its ports have been under Houthi control since late 2014, while Yemeni joint forces loyal to legitimate government and Arab coalition have massed at the city's fringes since last November seeking to retake the strategic port.

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