Gulf Cooperation Council Says Houthis Can Still Join Yemen Talks in Saudi Arabia

The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Assistant Secretary-General Abdulaziz Al-Aweisheq said that Yemen’s Houthi group can still join Yemeni talks in Saudi Arabia as negotiations to find a peaceful solution to the Yemen crisis continued into their second day on Thursday.

The Iranian-backed Houthis welcomed the decision to convene consultations among Yemeni parties for talks but refused to participate in any discussions being held in Saudi Arabia.

The Houthis said that Saudi Arabia is part of the war in Yemen and the talks should be held in a “neutral” country.

The international community has expressed optimism about the renewed effort under the auspices of the GCC to unite Yemen and find a consensus among the warring sides for a peaceful end to the war.

“The opening was very successful with key speakers from the Gulf states, the US and the UN envoy spoke on about Yemen, and are hopeful these consultations help end the war,” Majed Al Fadhil, Yemen’s deputy human rights minister, told The National.

Al Fadhil termed such consultation important not only in areas of improving economy and humanitarian, but also to bring the parties under “one umbrella” for the sake of peace.

Al Fadhil said that the Houthis ‘ refusal to join the talks had shown their willingness to continue the war.  “The rebels’ refusal to join the discussions in Saudi Arabia reflects the fact that they want the war to continue by serving the Iranians and spreading chaos across the region”, Al Fadhil added.

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