ADEN: Yemen’s foreign minister has submitted his resignation as differences emerge within the internationally recognized government over the handling of a UN-led peace initiative in the main port city of Hodeidah, two ministry sources said Monday.
Khaled Al-Yamani, who took over the post in May 2018, said he would step down after some officials in the government of Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi faulted him for not criticizing United Nations special envoy Martin Griffiths' performance.
The resignation needs to be accepted by Hadi, who last month complained in a letter to the UN secretary-general that Griffiths was “legitimising” the Houthi militants fighting against his government.
“He (Yamani) was expecting to be dismissed and so he submitted his resignation before that happens,” one source said.
Yamani could not immediately be reached for comment.
In his letter to Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, Hadi said Griffiths had failed to properly oversee the agreement for a ceasefire and troop withdrawal in Hodeidah, which became the focus of the war last year when the coalition tried to seize the Houthi-held Red Sea port.
The pact reached in December, the first significant breakthrough in peacemaking in over four years, had stalled for months until the Iran-aligned Houthis, who ousted Hadi from the capital Sanaa in late 2014, last month quit three ports in Hodeidah in a unilateral move.
The Houthis recently stepped up drone attacks on Saudi cities following a lull last year ahead of the December talks.
A UN official is expected to visit Saudi Arabia this week for talks with Saudi and Yemeni officials. Saudi Arabia is a member of the coalition of Arab countries providing military support to forces loyal to Hadi.