| 19 June 2024, Wednesday |

White House lauds Saudi Arabia after Houthi invite for Yemen peace talks

The White House hailed Saudi Arabia on Friday for inviting Houthi rebels to Riyadh for peace talks in an effort to resolve Yemen’s years-long conflict.

Members of the Iran-backed Houthi group arrived in the Kingdom this week, after Saudi Arabia’s announcement that the delegation was invited as part of the Saudi plan announced in March 2021.

It is Houthi members’ first formal visit since 2014.

Oman has also played an important role in attempting to resolve the conflict between the Houthis and the internationally recognized Yemeni government.

“We commend Saudi Arabia’s leadership for this current initiative and thank the leadership of Oman for its important role,” National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said in a statement.

Earlier this year, flights from Yemen to Saudi Arabia for Hajj pilgrims and a prisoner swap were all seen as positive developments.

The Biden administration has prioritized trying to help end the war, with the US president appointing a special envoy for Yemen as one of his first foreign policy moves after taking office.

“The United States has been proud to lend our diplomatic support to these peace efforts in coordination with the Yemeni parties and the United Nations,” Sullivan said on Friday.

Sullivan called on “all parties to this terrible conflict to further solidify and expand on the benefits of the truce.”

A UN-brokered ceasefire was reached last year and extended twice before the Houthis refused a third extension. But fighting and clashes have been significantly reduced, and cross-border attacks on Saudi Arabia have stopped for months.

  • alarabiya