UN envoy arrives in Riyadh as calm returns to Yemen’s Hodeidah

UN envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths (C) had attended a meeting with the President of the Houthi Revolutionary Committee, in the capital Sanaa, on Nov. 24, 2018. (File/AFP/Mohammed Huwais)
Updated 26 November 2018

UN envoy arrives in Riyadh as calm returns to Yemen’s Hodeidah

  • Fighting had intensified in early November as coalition-backed loyalist forces attempted to enter Hodeida
  • While the loyalist advance on Hodeida has largely stalled, minor clashes have continued

ADEN: The United Nations’ Yemen envoy arrived in Riyadh on Monday as part of efforts to convene December peace talks between the internationally recognized government and Houthi militia.
Martin Griffiths’ visit comes as fighting eased around the Houthi-held port  of Hodeidah, a vital lifeline for imports and aid, which has been the target of a Yemeni military offensive backed by the Arab Coaltion, whioch includes Saudi Arabia.
Fighting had intensified in early November as coalition-backed loyalist forces attempted to enter Hodeidah, but calm returned after Griffiths arrived in Yemen on Wednesday.

A oalition spokesman said on Monday that efforts are continuing towards peace negotiations expected to take place in Sweden, despite efforts by the Iran-backed Houthis to block them..

The UN said the envoy, who also visited Hodeidah last week to assess the humanitarian situation, is due to hold talks with Yemen’s legitimate government in Riyadh on Monday.
Military officials quoted by the state-run Saba news agency on Sunday evening said the government forces foiled a Houthi “infiltration attempt” into a camp in Hays province, about 100 kilometers (60 miles) south of Hodeidah.
The Houthis said they had detonated an explosive device near the eastern entrance of Hodeidah, “destroying a (pro-government) military vehicle... killing and wounding soldiers inside,” Houthi-run Al-Masirah reported on Monday.
But pro-government military officials told AFP on Monday that government forces’ operations in the east and south of the Red Sea city had been suspended.


Oman’s ruler back home after medical checkup in Belgium

Updated 42 min 55 sec ago

Oman’s ruler back home after medical checkup in Belgium

  • Sultan Qaboos has ruled Oman since he succeeded his father in 1970
  • The sultan has no known successor for his throne in Oman

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates: Oman’s 79-year-old ruler has returned to his sultanate after traveling to Belgium for a medical checkup, the sultanate’s state-run news agency reported Friday.

Sultan Qaboos bin Said left “for some medical checks that will take a limited period, God willing,” the Oman News Agency reported a week earlier, citing a royal court statement. A similar royal statement announced his return, without elaborating.

Bin Said has taken medical trips abroad in the past. The sultan has ruled Oman since he succeeded his father in 1970. He has no known successor for his throne in Oman, a country on the eastern edge of the Arabian Peninsula that’s home to some 4.6 million people.