Saudi Cabinet backs coalition’s call for dialogue between Yemeni parties

King Salman chairs the Cabinet session in Riyadh on Tuesday. (SPA)
Updated 31 January 2018
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Saudi Cabinet backs coalition’s call for dialogue between Yemeni parties

RIYADH: The Saudi Cabinet has welcomed statements from the Arab Coalition Supporting Legitimacy in Yemen calling for restraint and to open a dialogue over the developments in the temporary capital of Yemen in Aden.
Chaired by King Salman at Al-Yamamah Palace in Riyadh on Tuesday, the Cabinet also praised the coalition’s call on the Yemenis to work jointly with the coalition to complete liberation of Yemeni lands from the Iranian-backed Houthi militia and to avoid partition, discord and the undermining of state institutions in the conflict.
The Cabinet further welcomed the coalition’s demand to all Yemeni parties to stop fighting immediately and to focus on the key objectives, notably restoration of legitimacy, security and stability, and to resolve all issues through available political mechanisms.
At the local level, the Cabinet dealt with the Kingdom’s participation in the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, where the Saudi delegation highlighted the economic reforms undertaken by the Kingdom to build an economy depending on innovation in order to set an example at Arab and global levels.
On the Kingdom’s speech during an open dialogue at the UN Security Council last Thursday on “the situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question,” the Cabinet stressed that Al-Quds is the permanent and historic capital of Palestine in accordance with international resolutions. Any procedures taken by the Israeli occupation authorities are void and will only increase tension in the Middle East and weaken hopes of reaching a comprehensive and lasting two-state solution, the Cabinet said.
On terrorism, the Cabinet renewed the Kingdom’s strong condemnation of bombings in Kabul, Afghanistan, which resulted in tens of deaths and injuries. The Cabinet voiced the Kingdom’s condolences to the victims’ families and its solidarity with the Afghan government in the face of all forms of terrorism.
Later, the Cabinet approved a series of decisions including the establishment of diplomatic relations between the Kingdom and Rwanda and a cooperation agreement in agriculture between the Kingdom and Russia. The Cabinet also authorized the Minister of Housing to discuss and sign a draft memo of understanding on housing and construction between the Kingdom and Tunisia.


Investigation into alleged mistakes in Yemen find coalition forces acted properly

Updated 17 January 2019
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Investigation into alleged mistakes in Yemen find coalition forces acted properly

JEDDAH: The Joint Incident Assessment Team in Yemen (JIAT) has investigated four allegations made by international governmental and non-governmental organizations and media about mistakes made by coalition forces while carrying out military operations inside Yemen.
JIAT spokesman Mansour Al-Mansour said that the team concluded that the procedures followed by the coalition forces were proper and safe, taking into consideration the rules of engagement, international humanitarian law and the coalition’s own rules.
Team members visited a number of cities in Yemen, including Aden, Lahj and Khor Maksar, during the investigation and spoke to witnesses, victims and their families to gather evidence and establish the facts.
In one of the incidents that was investigated, coalition warship fired on and destroyed a craft in the waters off the Yemeni port of Al-Khokha in September. Al-Mansour said that after examining documents and evidence JIAT had concluded that an alliance ship was escorting and protecting a flotilla of three Saudi merchant ships when, in an area off the port of Al-Khokha, a boat was spotted approaching the convoy at a high speed from the direction of the Yemeni coast.
The escort ship followed the accepted rules of engagement by repeatedly warning the unidentified vessel, using loudspeakers, not to come any closer. When these went unheeded, warning shots were fired but the boat continued to approach.
“On reaching an area that represented a threat to the convoy, the protection ship tackled the boat according to the rules of engagement and targeted it, resulting in an explosion on the boat,” said Al-Mansour. “The protection ship continued escorting the convoy. After the escort task was completed, the protection ship returned to the site of the targeted boat to carry out a search-and-rescue operation for the crew of the target boat but no one was found.”