Hadi govt says Kerry proposal rewards Houthi terror

Yemeni Foreign Minister Abdel Malek Al-Mekhlafi
Updated 16 November 2016

Hadi govt says Kerry proposal rewards Houthi terror

DUBAI: Yemeni Foreign Minister Abdel Malek Al-Mekhlafi said on Tuesday his government was not interested in a cease-fire and unity government announcement by US Secretary of State John Kerry.
Speaking after talks in Oman, which is close to the Houthis, and in the UAE, a key member of the Saudi-led coalition, Kerry said he had presented Houthi delegates with a document outlining a cease-fire and peace deal.
He said the Houthis, whom he met in Oman on Monday night, had agreed to a truce from Thursday, provided the other side implemented it.
“And thus far the Emiratis and the Saudis ... they have both agreed to try to move forward with this,” he said.
The cease-fire would be on the same terms as an earlier one that ran from April until the end of August, when UN-sponsored peace talks in Kuwait ended in disagreement.
The Yemeni government quickly rejected the move, complaining of being bypassed.
“The government of Yemen is not aware of the statements made by Mr. Kerry and does not consider itself committed to them,” said Yemeni Foreign Minister Abdel Malek Al-Mekhlafi.
Remarks attributed to Kerry “are a bid to derail peace efforts and a bid to reach an agreement with the Houthis without the government,” he said. “I believe the current US administration is incapable of providing any guarantees to any party and what Kerry has said is no more than a media bubble at our people’s expense,” Al-Mekhlafi told Al-Jazeera television.
Kerry, in what could be his last trip to the Gulf before Obama’s term ends in January, is seeking a breakthrough to end the fighting between the Houthis, backed by Iran, and the internationally recognized government of Yemeni President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi.
“The key is now to get everybody on board,” he said, adding that it was now essential to implement a UN peace road map drawn up by special envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed.
“We have to have the final pieces, but I’m very hopeful that this can really come together, and has the potential to be a real turning point in this conflict, providing that everybody does their part,” Kerry added.

Saudis intercept missile
Saudi air defense forces on Tuesday intercepted and destroyed a ballistic missile fired from Yemen toward the Kingdom.
The missile was fired toward Najran but was shot down, said a coalition statement published by the official Saudi Press Agency.
Coalition forces responded by targeting the source of the fire inside Yemen, it added.


Lebanese lawmakers to defy naming of new PM

Updated 07 December 2019

Lebanese lawmakers to defy naming of new PM

  • Saad Hariri submitted the resignation of his government on Oct. 29 as a result of ongoing mass protests against corruption

BEIRUT: Three lawmakers and members of Lebanese President Michel Aoun’s parliamentary bloc will not abide by its decision to name a new prime minister on Monday. 

Meanwhile, activists in the civil movement are holding meetings to announce a general strike and the blocking of roads on Monday in protest over reports that the new government will not include technocrats.

Samir Al-Khatib is considered the most favored candidate after preliminary consultations conducted by Aoun with his allies prior to setting the date for binding parliamentary consultations to nominate a Sunni prime minister, as required by the Lebanese constitution.

Prime Minister Saad Hariri submitted the resignation of his government on Oct. 29 as a result of ongoing mass protests against corruption. He later said he would not agree to head a new government unless it consisted of technocrats.

Lawmaker Neemat Frem urged citizens to provide him with the name of their favorite candidate to head the new government, “for you are the primary source of authority, and it is my duty to convey your voice in the binding parliamentary consultations.”

Lawmaker Chamel Roukoz said he will not nominate anyone for the position of prime minister.

Lawmaker Michel Daher declared his intention to boycott the parliamentary consultations if Al-Khatib is the only candidate.

Aoun assured a delegation of British financial and investment institutions, and US bank Morgan Stanley, that binding parliamentary consultations will take place on Monday to form a new government, which will help Lebanon’s friends launch agreed-to development projects.

“The new government’s priority will be to address the economic and financial conditions as soon as it is formed,” he said.

HIGHLIGHT

Samir Al-Khatib is considered the most favored candidate after preliminary consultations conducted by Aoun with his allies prior to setting the date for binding parliamentary consultations to nominate a Sunni prime minister, as required by the Lebanese constitution.

On Friday, Hariri sent letters to the leaders of a number of countries with good relations with Lebanon. 

He asked them to help Lebanon secure credit to import goods from these countries, in order to ensure food security and availability of raw materials for production in various sectors.

His media office said the move “is part of his efforts to address the shortage of financial liquidity, and to secure procuring the basic import requirements for citizens.”

Among the leaders Hariri wrote to are Saudi Arabia’s King Salman; the presidents of France, Russia, Egypt and Turkey; the prime ministers of China and Italy; and the US secretary of state.

On Dec. 11, Paris is due to host a meeting of the International Support Group for Lebanon. Reuters quoted a European source as saying: “France has already sent invitations to attend the group meeting.”

Protesters continued their sit-ins in front of government institutions in Nabatieh, Zahle and Saida.

In Tripoli, protesters blocked the city’s main roads, which were eventually reopened by the army.

In Akkar, protesters raided public institutions and called for an “independent government that fights corruption, restores looted funds, and rescues the economic situation and living conditions from total collapse.”

Lebanese designer Robert Abi Nader canceled a fashion show that was due to be organized in Downtown Beirut, where protesters are gathering. 

Abi Nader said he intended through his show to express support for the protests by designing a special outfit called “the bride of the revolution,” and revenues were to be dedicated to families in need.