DUBAI: World leaders and diplomats welcomed the signing of the Riyadh Agreement between the Yemeni government and the Southern Transitional Council (STC) that was signed earlier this week.
The new arrangement - signed in Saudi Arabia - calls for an equal number of ministries between each of the STC and supporters of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi.
The negotiations began in August in the Saudi city of Jeddah after infighting threatened the unity of a coalition comprising STC forces and Hadi loyalists, which for years had been battling the Iran-allied Houthi militias.
“We are hopeful that the parties will use this critical opportunity to work together to end the conflict and to achieve the peace and stability that Yemen’s people deserve,” US Ambassador John Abizaid to Saudi Arabia said in a statement on Thursday.
The US ambassador commended King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman for their role in bringing the parties together “to restore unity in shared efforts to end Yemen’s long and destructive conflict.”
British Ambassador Michael Aron also praised the Mohammad bin Salman, calling the signing of the agreement a “significant achievement secured by the efforts of the Crown Prince.”
“It is also a big step towards a comprehensive political settlement in Yemen. We welcome it and urge both parties to implement it in the timescales stipulated,” the UK envoy added.
Yemen’s UN envoy Martin Griffiths also described the deal as an “important step” for collective efforts to advance a peaceful settlement to Yemen’s conflict.
“Listening to southern stakeholders is important to the political efforts to achieve peace in the country,” he said in an online statement.
“I am grateful to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for mediating successfully this agreement and for their strenuous diplomatic efforts,” Griffiths said.
Saudi Deputy Defence Minister, Prince Khalid Bin Salman, praised the efforts of the warring sides to end their dispute.
“They have put the Yemeni people’s interests over any other consideration,” Prince Khaled tweeted.
Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Sheikh Mohammad Al-Nahyan praised Saudi Arabia’s role in “in bringing about the Riyadh Agreement,”
“We sincerely wish that peace and prosperity prevail and that Yemenis enjoy security, stability and development,” the crown prince said.