Yemen foreign minister resigns amid differences over UN efforts

Khaled Al-Yamani took over the post in May 2018. (AFP/File photo)
Updated 10 June 2019

Yemen foreign minister resigns amid differences over UN efforts

  • Khaled Al-Yamani was faulted by some government official for not criticizing the UN's special envoy
  • Yemeni president last month complained to the UN secretary-general that envoy Martin Griffiths was 'legitimising' the Houthi militants

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.


Iran condemns US show of support for ‘rioters’

Updated 18 November 2019

Iran condemns US show of support for ‘rioters’

  • Protests erupted in Iran on Friday, hours after it was announced the price of petrol would rise to 15,000 rials a liter
  • ‘The dignified people of Iran know well that such hypocritical remarks do not carry any honest sympathy’

TEHRAN: Iran condemned the United States’ support for “rioters” in a statement issued late Sunday, after two days of violent protests in the Islamic republic against a petrol price hike.
The foreign ministry said that it was reacting to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s “expression of support... for a group of rioters in some cities of Iran and condemned such support and interventionist remarks.”
Protests erupted in Iran on Friday, hours after it was announced the price of petrol would rise to 15,000 rials a liter (12 US cents) from 10,000 for the first 60 liters and to 30,000 rials for any extra fuel bought after that each month.
In a tweet on Saturday, Pompeo said in response to the demonstrations that “the United States is with you.”
Iran’s foreign ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi slammed his comments in Sunday night’s statement.
“The dignified people of Iran know well that such hypocritical remarks do not carry any honest sympathy,” Mousavi was quoted as saying.
“The acts of a rioter and saboteur group supported by the likes of (Pompeo) have no congruity with the conduct of the wise Iranian people.”
The statement blasted Washington’s “ill-intent” over its decision to reimpose sanctions on Tehran after the US withdrawal in May last year from the landmark 2015 Iran nuclear deal.
“It’s curious that the sympathizing is being done with the people who are under the pressure of America’s economic terrorism,” Mousavi said.

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