British FM: Saudi-Led Campaign in Yemen ’Coming to Close’
British Foreign Minister Philip Hammond said after talks with Saudi King in Riyadh that the Saudi-led military campaign against Yemen is nearing its end as the focus turns to political talks.
“We detect the military phase of this campaign is coming to a close as the coalition forces have established a dominant military position in the country,” Hammond told reporters after talks with King Salman and other leading members of the royal family.
He said they focused on the need “for now accelerating the political discussion” and ensuring the Yemeni Huthi rebels and their allies join negotiations for “serious and sensible” talks.
The United Nations special envoy for Yemen, Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed, on Friday told the Security Council that the Houthi revolutionaries and backers of former president Ali Abdullah Saleh had “clearly committed” to carrying out Resolution 2216.
The UN envoy said the Yemeni government of ousted President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi had agreed to send a delegation to the forthcoming negotiations, for which no date has been set.
“We’re optimistic that the talks will lead somewhere,” Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir told reporters at a joint news conference with Hammond.
Jubeir also said that military action appeared to be heading towards a conclusion.
Yemen has been since March 26 under brutal aggression by Saudi-led coalition. Thousands have been martyred and injured in the attack, with the vast majority of them are civilians.
Riyadh launched the attack on Yemen in a bid to restore power to fugitive Hadi who is a close ally to Saudi Arabia.