Saudi Arabia, allies slam ‘biased’ UN resolution on Yemen

Yemeni children accompanied by their fathers hold weapons during a gathering in Sanaa to show support for the Houthi militia. (File/AFP)
Updated 30 September 2018
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Saudi Arabia, allies slam ‘biased’ UN resolution on Yemen

  • It comes after the UN Human Rights Council voted to extend an international probe of alleged war crimes committed in Yemen
  • Saudi Arabia and its allies bemoaned what they said was the council’s “failure to achieve consensus”

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia and key allies have denounced as “biased” a resolution that renewed a UN-backed investigation of alleged war crimes in Yemen.
The condemnation was issued in a joint statement released by the Yemen government, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt. It comes after the UN Human Rights Council voted to extend an international probe of alleged war crimes committed in Yemen. “We are left with a resolution which is biased, and which clearly contradicts the clear mandate laid out by the UN Security Council,” said the joint statement. Rights council members voted in favor of the resolution in Geneva on Friday by 21 to 8, with 18 abstentions. Saudi Arabia and its allies bemoaned what they said was the council’s “failure to achieve consensus.” “In particular, we are disappointed that certain member states failed to consider the real and legitimate concerns of those states who are most affected by the situation in Yemen,” their joint statement said.
The resolution showed “disregard for Yemen’s sovereign right to give its consent to cooperate with international resolutions that deal directly with the human rights situation on its own territory,” it added. On the eve of the vote, the Yemeni government had announced it was ending its cooperation with the UN human rights mission, accusing it of bias in an August report on alleged war crimes. The report accused both government forces and the Houthi militia of violations of international law.
Earlier, Arab Coalition spokesman Col. Turki Al-Maliki criticized the inaccuracy of the information in the report.
The report “failed to mention Iran’s role in Yemen, and the countless violations perpetrated by the Houthis, both against the Yemeni people and against Saudi Arabia,” Al-Maliki said.
The Houthis have fired more than 200 missiles at Saudi Arabia since it intervened in Yemen in March 2015.
The coalition accuses Iran of smuggling the missiles through the rebel-held Red Sea port of Hodeida, the entry point for UN aid for millions of civilians.


Pakistan PM receives Saudi crown prince at Rawalpindi airbase

Updated 16 min 46 sec ago
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Pakistan PM receives Saudi crown prince at Rawalpindi airbase

  • Islamabad puts out all stops for Crown Prince Salman's first official visit
  • Trip expected to enhance historically close bilateral ties and expand cooperation in trade and investment

ISLAMABAD: Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was received by Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan and Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa as he landed in Rawalpindi on Sunday evening to sign a host of important investment deals during a two-day visit.

Prime Minister Khan broke protocol by personally driving the Saudi royal from the Nur Khan Airbase in Rawalpindi on the outskirts of the capital city of Islamabad.

The trip, the crown prince's first to the country since he became the heir-apparent in April 2017, is being seen by Pakistan as one of the most important state visits in recent memory. It is aimed at boosting bilateral ties, long defined by security and defense deals, by expanding economic cooperation and sealing several investment deals.

During the visit, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia are expected to sign memoranda of understanding (MoUs) in various sectors including investment, finance, power, renewable energy, internal security, media, culture, and sports. Deals of over $20 billion will be signed, information minister Fawad Chaudhry told Arab News on Sunday.

The crown jewel in the investments is a $10 billion refinery and petrocomplex to be set up in the port of city of Gwadar in southwestern Pakistan. 

Pakistan has put out all stops for the visit of the powerful Saudi heir, with Saudi and Pakistani flags, welcome banners and huge portraits of the crown prince, PM Khan and Pakistani President Arif Alvi put up at several key points in Islamabad.

Security was tight in the capital on the weekend, with authorities restricting entry into the Red Zone, a diplomatic enclave which houses important state-owned buildings including the Prime Minister House, President House and the Supreme Court.

The crown prince -- who is accompanied by a coterie of officials from the Saudi Royal family, key ministers, and leading businessmen -- is expected to discuss bilateral, regional, and global issues during meetings with the president, the prime minister, Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani, and Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa.

The Saudi royal will also attend a dinner at the PM House on Sunday night and a luncheon at the Presidential Palace on Monday. He will co-chair with PM Khan meetings of joint working groups in many sectors including energy, trade and media on Monday.

“A delegation of Pakistan’s Senate will also call on the crown prince to discuss ways to enhance parliamentary cooperation between the two countries,” the Foreign Office said in a statement, adding that Saudi ministers would meet their counterparts to discuss bilateral cooperation in their respective fields.

"On the sidelines of the visit, the businessmen of the two countries will meet to discuss opportunities for collaboration in the private sector,” the statement read.

“The visit...will significantly enhance bilateral ties between the two countries in all spheres of cooperation,” the Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday.