Ayatollah Khamenei made the comments in a meeting in Tehran on Tuesday with a visiting delegation from Yemen’s Houthi Ansarullah movement, led by its spokesman Mohammed Abdul-Salam.
The Leader said the Saudis, the Emiratis and their supporters, who have perpetrated great crimes in Yemen, are after “disintegrating Yemen, a plot that should be confronted decisively,” adding, however, that the scheme is doomed to failure.
Ayatollah Khamenei further emphasized the need for protecting the war-torn country’s “unity” and “territorial integrity,” saying, “Preservation of Yemen’s integrity, given the country’s various religious ideologies and ethnicities, requires Yemeni-Yemeni dialog.”
Tens of thousands of people have died since Saudi Arabia led a coalition of its allies — most notably the UAE — in a US-backed war against the Arab world’s most impoverished nation aimed at reinstating Yemen’s former Riyadh-friendly government.
The Houthi movement, backed by allied Yemeni armed forces, has been successfully defending the nation against the Saudi-led aggression.
Elsewhere, the Leader congratulated the Yemeni people on their successful resistance in the face of the military aggression, asserting that the oppressed nation will undoubtedly emerge victorious.
“A good future” is awaiting the Yemeni people, the Leader noted. “With divine grace, they will form a strong government and achieve progress within the framework of that government.”
The Houthi Ansarullah movement has been running Yemen’s state affairs since 2014, when then president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi resigned amid a political conflict with the Houthis and later fled to the Saudi capital.
The Leader further criticized the West’s indifference towards the crimes being committed in Yemen, saying the developments unfolding in the Arab country have exposed the true nature of those who claim to be advocates of human rights in the US and the West.
“American and Western statesmen perpetrate the worst excesses under a humanitarian, civic, and moral guise, and interminably claiming regard for human rights,” Ayatollah Khamenei said.
“These criminal powers should be confronted with the power of devotion, resistance, and by reliance on [faith in] divine victory. This is the only way [to confront them],” the Leader added.
Ayatollah Khamenei cited the instance of the Islamic Republic’s resistance against foreign pressure since the 1979 Islamic Revolution, especially during the ex-Iraqi regime’s Western-backed war on Iran in 1980s.
Despite 40 years of sanctions, the Iranian nation has made important achievements in the area of defense, the Leader said.
Ayatollah Khamenei further offered condolences over the recent assassination of Ibrahim Badreddin al-Houthi, Ansarullah leader Abdul-Malik al-Houthi’s brother, which is reported to be linked to the Saudi regime.
Ansarullah hails Iran’s support
The Houthi spokesman, for his part, praised Ayatollah Khamenei’s support for the Yemeni nation as “a blessing” and “highly encouraging.”
He equated Iran’s backing for the world’s oppressed people, especially Yemenis, with “a religious and ideological position.”
The Yemenis are confronting a war being waged by as many as 17 nations, Abdul-Salam said, pledging that the nation’s resistance and steadfastness in the face of the oppressors will last until “complete victory.”