Houthi: Yemen talks not dependent on end of hostilities

Houthi: Yemen talks not dependent on end of hostilities
2 min read
17 April, 2015
A member of the Houthi political bureau says his movement is open to talks even while Saudi Arabia continues its air campaign against its fighters.
Saudi-led airstrikes against the Houthis and their allies began on 26 March [AFP/Getty]
A member of the Houthi political bureau has called for talks to end the fighting in Yemen, saying an end to the Saudi-led air campaign was "not a prerequirement for dialogue to resume". 

Mohammed al-Bukhaiti told the Anadolu news agency: "We are still calling for a return to the negotiating table under circumstances and without any prior conditions. Stopping the aggression is not a requirement for resuming dialogue."

Previously, the group had demanded that the aggression end before discussions could take place. Bukhaiti told Reuters earlier that Saudi Arabia "must immediately and unconditionally stop" the military intervention.

Meanwhile, Khalid Bahah, Yemen's former prime minister, said in his first press conference since being appointed vice president, that there would be no dialogue until the Houthis and their allies ended their aggression.

Bahah demanded that the Houthi and pro-Saleh militias adhere to international resolutions, stop derailing the future of the country, destroying its institutions and deliberately killing civilians, and end the military operations to take over the south. 

He welcomed the UN Security Council resolution on Yemen and called on members of the military and police to support the legitimate government.
     Stopping the aggression is not a requirement for resuming dialogue.
Mohammed al-Bukhaiti, Houthi politician

Media reports have said that the former president, Ali Abdullah Saleh, who is aligned with the Houthis, sent messages with members of the General People's Congress (GPC) to Gulf leaders asking for a safe exit for him and his family, but that his request was denied by Saudi Arabia.

Preparations for military intervention on the ground have also continued. An Arab diplomat told al-Araby al-Jadeed that there will be a meeting of Arab chiefs-of-staff on Wednesday with Arab League Secretary-General Nabil al-Arabi about the decision to from a join Arab military force.

He added that the meeting will address ongoing issues in the Arab world, threats to national security due to the outbreak of conflicts in several countries and the increase of cross-border terrorism that is now threatening the unity and existence of some Arab countries.

He thought it was likely that Operation Decisive Strom and its achievements would be a priority in the talks, especially after the UN resolution last Tuesday that demanded an end to the violence in Yemen.

This is an edited translation from our Arabic version