The spokesman for Yemen’s Houthi Ansarullah movement says the uptick in Saudi-led airstrikes on the strategic port city of Hudaydah will eventually frustrate efforts by United Nations Envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths to rekindle peace talks in Sweden next month.
Saudi-led military aircraft have bombarded Hudaydah 35 times over the last 12 hours. This came as Saudi-sponsored militiamen loyal to former Yemeni president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi have targeted several areas in the port city with missiles and artillery rounds, Yemen’s Arabic-language al-Masirah television network cited Mohammed Abdul-Salam as writing on his official Twitter page on Sunday.
He noted that the increase in the extent of Saudi-led attacks on Hudaydah have exposed the main motives of the Riyadh regime and its regional allies, warning that the process will only destroy peace efforts of the UN special envoy to Yemen.
Earlier on Sunday, Saudi warplanes launched two airstrikes against a farm in the al-Durayhimi district of the Yemeni province. There were no immediate reports about possible casualties and the extent of damage caused.
Saudi warplanes also carried out ten aerial assaults on al-Garrahi and al-Tuhayat districts in Hudaydah province, with no immediate reports of casualties.
Yemen’s popular Houthi Ansarullah movement has agreed to negotiate handing the UN a “leading UN role” in managing the vital Hudaydah port.
During a meeting with Griffiths in the Yemeni capital Sana’a on Thursday, the leader of the Houthi Ansarullah movement stressed the importance of credibility and the will of the Saudi-led military alliance to push for a political solution to the Yemeni conflict away from fallacies that it employed during the previous round of negotiations.
Abdul-Malik al-Houthi added that people from all strata of the Yemeni society were suffering from the Saudi-led military aggression alongside the sea, land and air blockade on the Arab country.
The Ansarullah leader also praised positive initiatives and practical steps, which seek to ensure a political solution to the Yemeni conflict.
Yemeni forces have reportedly hit a military base in Saudi Arabia’s Asir region with a ballistic missile.
Houthi then demanded an immediate end to the Saudi-led aggression, the removal of economic sanctions, which have forced the Yemeni riyal to plunge drastically against foreign currencies, and the ease of humanitarian aid deliveries.
Earlier this week, the administration of Hadi announced that it would take part in the proposed peace talks in Sweden next month, hours after the chairman of the Supreme Revolutionary Committee of Yemen, Mohammed Ali al-Houthi, said Ansarullah fighters were halting their retaliatory attacks as a goodwill measure to speed up “peace” process.
Griffiths says that he has received “firm assurances” that the warring Yemeni parties would attend talks in the Swedish city of Stockholm.
Britain has presented a draft UN Security Council resolution on Yemen, and called on parties involved in Yemen’s crisis to restart peace negotiations.
“The conflict in Yemen can only be resolved though an inclusive political process,” the draft resolution said.
The draft sets a two-week deadline for warring Yemeni parties to remove all barriers to humanitarian aid, to halt attacks on civilian areas and allow unhindered access to the strategic port city of Hudaydah.
Saudi Arabia and a number of its regional allies launched a devastating military campaign against Yemen in March 2015, with the aim of bringing the government of Hadi back to power and crushing the country’s Houthi Ansarullah movement.
At least five Emirati soldiers have been killed after a base run by the UAE came under attack in Yemen’s southern province of Abyan.
According to a new report by the Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED), a nonprofit conflict-research organization, the Saudi-led war has so far claimed the lives of around 56,000 Yemenis.
The Saudi-led war has also taken a heavy toll on the country’s infrastructure, destroying hospitals, schools, and factories. The UN has already said that a record 22.2 million Yemenis are in dire need of food, including 8.4 million threatened by severe hunger. According to the world body, Yemen is suffering from the most severe famine in more than 100 years.
A number of Western countries, the US and Britain in particular, are also accused of being complicit in the ongoing aggression as they supply the Riyadh regime with advanced weapons and military equipment as well as logistical and intelligence assistance.