Saudi Arabia, UAE form joint panel to enforce Yemen cease-fire

Fighters with the so-called Security Belt Forces loyal to the pro-independence Southern Transitional Council (STC) gather near the south-central coastal city of Zinjibar in south-central Yemen, in the Abyan governorate, on August 21, 2019. (AFP / Nabil Hasan)
Updated 26 August 2019

Saudi Arabia, UAE form joint panel to enforce Yemen cease-fire

  • The panel will ensure all the ceasefire procedures are followed
  • Saudi Arabia and UAE will continue their support for the Arab coalition

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia and the UAE have formed a joint panel to support the cease-fire between Yemen’s government and southern separatist forces in Shabwah and Abyan, Saudi state news agency SPA reported on Monday.

The panel will ensure the implementation of the cease-fire, Arab coalition spokesman Col. Turki Al-Maliki said.

The two states issued a joint statement by the foreign ministries, urging the sides to honor the cease-fire and return the civilian headquarters in Aden of the legitimate government.

The governments of Saudi Arabia and the UAE confirmed they will continue their support, politically, militarily and through relief support to the Arab coalition in Yemen, the statement added.

The strong relationship between Saudi Arabia and the UAE is the cornerstone of peace and prosperity in the region, prominent Saudi officials tweeted on Monday.

The kingdom is leading efforts to combat the instability caused by Iran and extremists in the region, Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel Al-Jubeir said.

The Arab coalition, under the leadership of Saudi Arabia and the UAE’s support, will not spare any efforts to spread peace and prosperity in Aden, Shabweh and Abyan, Al-Jubeir added.

Meanwhile, Saudi deputy Minister of Defense Khalid bin Salman said dialogue is the only way to resolve the present disagreements in Yemen.

There is a great difference between those who are working for the national interest of Yemen and those who are fighting these people to please the Iranian regime and contribute to their “terrorist plan” in the region, he added.

Later on Monday, the separatist forces of the so-called Southern Transitional Council (STC) said they will continue their cooperation with the Arab coalition countries and will support Shabwani Elite forces against terrorists.

The STC declared last month they were breaking away from the UN-recognized legitimate government of Yemeni President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, based in the southern city of Aden.

Their forces seized governmental structures and military camps in Aden, Shabwa and Abyan. Last week, they partially withdrew from strategic areas in Aden under pressure from Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

STC still retain control of military sites in the province. 

Egypt prepares for Nile floods, warns citizens

Updated 13 min 20 sec ago

Egypt prepares for Nile floods, warns citizens

  • The minister said that there should be a daily report on the land and buildings affected by high water levels

CAIRO: Egypt has warned people about Nile flooding, telling local authorities to take precautionary measures to minimize damage and loss of life. 

The Ministry of Irrigation informed various governorates that some of their land risked being submerged as a result of flooding and high water levels.

Egyptian Minister of Irrigation Mohamed Abdel Aty said on Tuesday that the warnings were being issued so that people could take preventive steps and become aware of the expected dangers, despite the fact they were living or farming illegally in the at-risk areas.

He directed the heads of central departments to coordinate with governors and local authorities and for them to inform ministry agencies about infringements and violations on all waterways, especially on the Nile River course, with removal decisions to be sent to military prosecution offices for legal action.

The minister said that there should be a daily report on the land and buildings affected by high water levels. 

The El-Beheira governorate sent information to local units on the Nile in the Rosetta Branch, stressing that measures should be taken in response to rising river levels in the coming days.

The leaflet included instructions to evacuate homes, buildings, livestock pens and fish cages. It also called on all residents of Kom Hamada, Itay El-Barud, Shubrakhit, Rahmaniyah, Mahmoudeya and Rasheed, to evacuate their homes and all buildings, livestock pens and fish cages.

“The lands threatened by drowning from the river overflowing are initially the property of the Ministry of Irrigation and have been subjected to building and agricultural encroachments by some people and despite, these violations, the Nile Protection sends warnings to the agricultural administrations and locals to alert farmers of an expected increase in the water level to avoid losses,” Amer Shukry, a ministry official in El-Beheira, said.

Agricultural land in the Kom Hamada district was submerged at the start of September as a result of high water levels. 

The head of the General Authority of the High Dam, Hussein Jalal, said that the ministry was ready to face the most violent flood in Egypt’s history.

He explained that it had been fully prepared to deal with the flooding since last May, and the priority was to ensure the safe level of collected water behind the High Dam and its discharge to waterways according to the attributed rate.

Jalal confirmed the technical conditions of the High Dam and Lake Aswan and the full readiness of all dams and overflows, explaining that the dam was able to deal with the current flood.