Politics

Hizbullah sabotaging UN-sponsored peace talks: Yemeni government

By Nabil Abdullah al-Tamimi in Aden

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Yemeni artists paint a pro-peace graffiti on a wall in the capital Sanaa on August 16th, as they call for peace and tolerance and rejecting the ongoing conflict in the Arab country. [Mohammed Huwais/AFP]

Yemen’s government filed a complaint Sunday (August 26th) with the UN Security Council accusing Lebanese militia Hizbullah of sabotaging the upcoming peace talks in Geneva through its support for the Iran-backed Houthis (Ansarallah).

The letter of complaint was submitted to the Security Council by Yemen’s permanent representative to the UN Ahmed Awad bin Mubarak, local media reported.

It stressed the Yemeni government’s concern over Hizbullah’s intervention in the country’s conflict, citing an August 19th meeting between Hizbullah leader Hassan Nasrallah and Houthi delegation chief Mohammed Abdul Salam.

"The Houthis are receiving instructions from the terrorist Hizbullah which is trying to confound the UN-brokered peace negotiations," said the complaint.

The letter of complaint noted "the clear intervention" by the Iranian regime and Hizbullah in the upcoming talks "by giving instructions to the Houthis to undermine the negotiations and destroy the great efforts of the UN peace envoy to Yemen".

It cited Nasrallah’s televised speech on June 29th in which he called for fighting against Yemeni forces along the country’s west coast.

"The Iranian regime and Hizbullah are strong partners in spilling Yemenis’ blood in a blatant intervention in Yemen’s internal affairs and aggression on the legitimate government and neighbouring countries," said the complaint.

"Hizbullah has sent military advisors and instructors to the Houthis in stark violation of UN Security Council Resolution 1701 of 2006," it added.

The letter demanded that the Security Council’s Sanctions Committee, formed under paragraph 19 of Resolution 2140 (2014), "investigate Hizbullah’s activities which pose a major threat to Yemen, and to take all necessary actions".

Hizbullah incites violence

Adel al-Shogaa, a member of the General Committee of the General People’s Congress (GPC), said Yemen’s complaint against Hizbullah came at the right time, particularly as Hizbullah chief Hassan Nasrallah urged his supporters to "go fight in Yemen".

"Hizbullah, which is designated as a terrorist entity, calls for fighting in Yemen in a flagrant and overt intervention to expand its terror operations," he told Al-Mashareq.

"Incitements by a terrorist entity to other groups to recruit [fighters] and expand the base of terrorism will not undermine the peace talks in Geneva alone, but will sabotage the entire peace process," he said.

"Iran's role in the region, including Yemen, is very clear, as is its engagement in sectarian incitement," he said.

The war in Yemen is a "proxy war" waged by Iran through the Houthis, said political analyst Yasser al-Tamimi.

By providing support to the Houthis, the Iranian regime and Hizbullah want to defeat the Arab coalition, he told Al-Mashareq.

This presents a roadblock to the next round of Geneva negotiations, he said, in addition to the Houthis' desire to "maintain the political and military gains they have made".

Yemen’s Foreign Minister Khalid al-Yamani had on July 11th sent a letter of protest to his Lebanese counterpart Gebran Bassil condemning the Hizbullah chief's incitement and his militia’s interventions in Yemen through their support of the Houthis.

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