Yemeni gov't reasserts its right to monitor withdrawals from Hodeida

Aden (Debriefer)
2019-05-15 | Since 3 Month

اضغط هنا لقراءة الخبر بالعربية

The internationally-recognized government of Yemen has reasserted its right to monitor withdrawals of Houthi forces from Hodeida three ports, in accordance with the UNSC resolutions, through the Redeployment Coordination Committee (RCC), dismissing the unilateral withdrawal as a violation of Stockholm Agreement.

It is not enough to have the RCC chair, Danish General Michael Lollesgaard, presenting a briefing on process, said the government in a letter to the UN Security Council.

"If not monitored and approved by RCC three parties, Houthi withdrawal will be in violation of what has been agreed on throughout last monthsand will destroy the international community's efforts," the letteradded.

Withdrawal in such a way "provides free service for Houthi militias to repeat the previous farce of unilateral withdrawal on 30 December 2018, towards which General Cammaert has strict stance," said the government.

The UNSC is expected to hold Wednesday a meeting on developments in Yemen.

On Monday, government military spokesman, Colonel Wathah al-Dubaish, said the withdrawal from Hodeida ports was no longer unilateral.

The withdrawal has been considered as part of the concept agreed for the wider redeployment's first stage," Dubaish told the Saudi Asharq Al-Awsat paper.

Based on clarifications presented by RCC head to the UNSC on Houthi withdrawal, many inquiries have been explained, he added. On Saturday, "General Lollesgaard and the government team held a meeting that addressed many aspects pertaining to the withdrawal within timeframe, and the activation of the UN leading role."

He said they agreed at the meeting on a definite timed plan for verification and inspection mechanism,for demining and demilitarization and the finalization of first stage, and on a supervision mechanism for ports' revenues, said Dubaish.

UN monitors have arrived to supervise the withdrawal, and government monitors will be briefed on the withdrawal mechanism and allowed access to the three Red Sea ports to make sure of the process, he added.

On Saturday, Houthis said their forces begun redeploymentout of the ports of Salif,Ras Isa and Hodeida, under supervision by UN three teams, in application of the UN-brokered peace deal reached by rivals in Sweden last December, according to the Sana'a-based Saba.

Officials at the Yemeni government, however, dubbed the Houthi move as "misleading and farce," with FM Yamani saying the Stockholm deal on Hodeida does not include unilateral withdrawal by any party.

Yemen has been racked by a 4-year bloody conflictbetween the internationally-recognized Yemeni government's forces, backed by a Saudi-led coalition, and the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels who ousted the government in 2014.

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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