Yemen lashes out at UAE, Iran in UN speech

Yemen lashes out at UAE, Iran in UN speech
Yemen's foreign minister Mohammed Abdullah al-Hadrami lashed out at the Houthi rebels, Iran and the UAE during his speech at the UN General Assembly.
2 min read
29 September, 2019
Al-Hadhrami said Iran is 'the main sponsor of terrorism throughout the world' [Getty]
Yemen's new foreign minister on Saturday hit out at Iranian-backed Houthi rebels who control much of the country's north as well as UAE allies for their activities in the south.

In his address to the UN General Assembly, Mohammed Abdullah al-Hadrami called Iran "the main sponsor of terrorism throughout the world."

He urged an end to what he called an "Iranian-Houthi coup d'etat in Yemen".

Al-Hadrami also hit out at the United Arab Emirates for supporting separatist forces in the south of Yemen.

A Saudi-led coalition including the UAE has been fighting the Houthis since 2015 on behalf of the internationally-recognised government.

But the UAE is now undermining the work of the coalition, al-Hadrami said.

"The Emirati aggression has undermined the noble goals of the coalition to assist the legitimacy of Yemen," he told delegates.

The civil war has killed tens of thousands of people and sparked the world's worst humanitarian crisis in the Arab world's most impoverished country.

In response the UAE representative to the UN, Amira al-Hefiti, rejected what she called "allegations" by al-Hadrami.

Al-Hefiti defended the airstrikes carried out by UAE planes against the Yemeni army forces in the outskirts of the city and in the province of Abyan last month, describing the move as of self-defence against "terrorist organisations".

Read more: Saudi Arabia, UAE have lost the plot in Yemen, but it's good news for Russia

Both Saudi Arabia and the UAE officially back President Hadi’s government but the UAE has pursued its own agenda in Yemen, supporting the separatist Southern Transitional Council and its associated militias, who want to recreate the state of South Yemen, which existed before 1990, when it united with North Yemen to form the Yemeni Republic.

In August, UAE backed separatists seized the presidential palace and army camps in Aden. On 29 August, dozens were killed when UAE forces carried out strikes against government forces trying to recapture the city.

This led to the Yemeni government condemning the UAE and joining calls for a boycott of its Emirates airline, as well as increasing tension between Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

Saudi Arabia has also threatened the UAE-backed separatists with a “decisive” reaction if they did not return control of Aden to the government.

Agencies contributed to this report.

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