Yemen government and southern separatists agree to ceasefire, talks in Saudi Arabia

1 / 2
Fighters from the Southern Transitional Council (STC) in the southern Abyan province in May. (AFP/File)
2 / 2
A military vehicle beloging to Yemen’s southern separatist forces blocks the entrance at a local administration building on the strategic island of Socotra, on June 22, 2020.
Short Url
Updated 22 June 2020

Yemen government and southern separatists agree to ceasefire, talks in Saudi Arabia

  • Arab coalition welcomes the move to deescalate tensions in Abyan and on Socotra island
  • Saudi ambassador says situation 'calls for political resolve and serious cooperation'

RIYADH: Yemen’s government and southern separatist forces have agreed a cease-fire and will begin talks in Saudi Arabia on implementing a peace deal, the Kingdom’s ambassador to Yemen said Monday.
The Arab Coalition fighting to restore the internationally recognized Yemeni government welcomed the move.
Both sides accepted a truce in Abyan province, a de-escalation of tensions in other regions, and the start of talks on implementing an agreement reached in November to end fighting, ambassador Mohammed Al-Jaber said.
“The Kingdom and coalition states have made continuous efforts since signing the Riyadh Agreement for its implementation and that faced many challenges that hindered and derailed it,” Al-Jaber said.
The Yemeni government and the Southern Transitional Council (STC) are part of an alliance fighting the Iran-backed Houthi militia, which triggered the conflict in 2014 by seizing the capital Sanaa.

But last summer government forces and the STC clashed in the country’s south before Saudi Arabia brought the parties together for talks in Riyadh.
Tensions have again flared recently with the STC reportedly taking over the island of Socotra, located between Yemen and the Horn of Africa.
Al-Jaber said the current situation “calls for political resolve and serious cooperation between the two parties to serve the national interest, restore state institutions to serve Yemeni people and alleviate their suffering.”
The Arab Coalition said it denounced the recent tensions and called on all parties to uphold the national interests of the country.
The alliance also called for a “halt to bloodshed, by adhering to the Riyadh Agreement and returning the conditions on the island of Socotra back to normal, a cease-fire in Abyan governorate, and avoid escalation in all Yemeni governorates.”

“In light of the recent events in Socotra and Abyan, the coalition welcomes the response of the legitimate Yemeni government and the STC for its request of a comprehensive cease-fire, de-escalation, and a meeting to be convened in the Kingdom to move forward in implementing the Riyadh Agreement,” coalition spokesman, Col. Turki Al-Maliki said.
Al-Maliki said the coalition rejects any practices that harm the “security, stability and volatility of the Riyadh Agreement.”
Al-Maliki also called for political and military committees from either side to reconvene to oversee the de-escalation.
The coalition will deploy monitors on the ground in Abyan to observe the cease-fire with the STC.


King Salman receives closing statement of the Science Group Summit

Saudi Health Minister Dr. Tawfiq Al-Rabiah, right, receives the closing statement of the S20 group from its chair Dr. Anas bin Faris Al-Fares. (SPA)
Updated 29 September 2020

King Salman receives closing statement of the Science Group Summit

  • The closing statement of the meeting included 10 recommendations, which will be submitted to the G20 heads of state

On behalf of King Salman, Health Minister Dr. Tawfiq Al-Rabiah on Monday received the closing statement of the Science Group Summit (S20) from the group’s chair, Dr. Anas bin Faris Al-Fares, who is also the president of King Abdul Aziz City for Science and Technology, after a virtual meeting.
Several scientific organizations from the G20 countries took part in the meeting, which was hosted by Saudi Arabia. The S20 group focuses on future health, a circular economy and the digital revolution. The meeting stressed the importance of making decisions based on scientific facts supported by data.
The closing statement of the meeting included 10 recommendations, which will be submitted to the G20 heads of state. More than 180 scholars participated in drafting the recommendation. They called for increasing the level of preparedness in the wake of a pandemic. They also recommended consolidating advanced treatment and precision medical research with a particular focus on keeping the costs affordable and treatments accessible to all.
The group also stressed the need to devise policies to face challenges arising from demographic shifts. One of the recommendations includes development of an integrated approach to the extraction of natural resources.
They also urged the relevant authorities to consolidate recycling systems to curb carbon emissions.