UN Yemen envoy to brief Security Council on prospect of restarting peace talks

UN Yemen envoy to brief Security Council on prospect of restarting peace talks

Today, UN Special Envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths will brief the UN Security Council on the Yemeni civil war. Restarting

Yemen peace talks

Photo: Hani Mohammed/AP

Today, UN Special Envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths will brief the UN Security Council on the Yemeni civil war. Restarting a resettlement negotiation between Houthi forces and internationally recognized, Saudi-backed Yemeni government leaders in late August will be the priority.

Riyadh recently halted oil shipment through the critical Bab al-Mandab strait in response to Houthi missiles striking Saudi oil tankers. Shortly after the rebels also claimed to have hit Abu Dhabi airport. The Houthis have offered a Red Sea ceasefire, although the coalition is unlikely to accept for fear of portraying weakness.

Griffiths has been shuttling between the US, Gulf states and Yemen to organize the negotiation table. The Saudi-led Gulf state coalition and Houthi fighters alike seek a diplomatic solution. However, these parties have made their standpoints clear: the Yemeni government demands that Houthis leave al-Hudaydah port city, and the Houthis demand that the coalition halt its attacks.

These near-term diplomatic efforts are highly unlikely to succeed given the escalation of force and unwavering positions of both sides. Instead, expect the Saudi-led coalition to vie for international support in using force against the Houthis’ threat on all regional interests and for the Houthis to continue escalating offences within and across Yemen’s borders.

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