Egypt supports Saudi efforts to solve Yemeni crisis

Fire is seen at the site of Saudi-led air strikes in Sanaa, Yemen September 13, 2020. (Reuters)
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Updated 14 September 2020

Egypt supports Saudi efforts to solve Yemeni crisis

  • Egyptian Foreign Ministry stresses importance of comprehensive ceasefire in Yemen

CAIRO: The Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs affirmed the country’s full support for the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen against Iranian-backed Houthi militias.

The ministry condemned the militias’ targeting of civilian installations in the city of Marib with ballistic missiles, which has resulted in the injury of many civilians.

Egypt also confirmed its alignment with Saudi Arabia in its efforts to advance a political solution in Yemen, and to implement the ceasefire between the legitimate government forces and the Houthis.

Ahmed Fouad Abaza, deputy chairperson of the Arab Affairs Committee in the Egyptian Parliament, affirmed that Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi stood by the Kingdom in its rejection of external interference in the affairs of Arab countries, to protect Arab and Gulf national security.

Yemeni Prime Minister Maeen Abdulmalik, Abaza said, had spoken with El-Sisi about Yemen’s national security.

Abaza praised Abdulmalik’s assertion that Egypt would be present in everything related to the Yemeni crisis. He said that the Yemeni crisis would not be resolved as long as Iranian support for the Houthis continued, and that the demolition of national states such as Iraq contributed to the emergence of armed militias.

Abaza appealed to the Yemeni people to stand united behind the legitimate institutions inside their country to prevent Iranian interference, accusing the international community of negligence in confronting Turkish and Iranian interventions in Yemen, and also in Libya.

Mohammed Sadiq Ismail, director of the Arab Center for Strategic Studies, said that Yemen needed to be a pillar of stability for Arab national security.

He explained that Yemen was currently facing multiple problems, politically, economically and socially, as a result of the Houthi control of Al-Hudaydah (Hodeidah), and the lack of humanitarian aid entering the country.

On Sunday, the Yemeni government announced that it considered the Hodeidah Agreement, also known as the Stockholm Agreement, signed between it and the Houthis, to be functionally useless.

Yemen’s Foreign Minister Mohammed Al-Hadhrami confirmed during a meeting with UN Envoy Martin Griffiths that the agreement had been rendered futile by the Houthi’s exploitation of it, and that their actions were unacceptable.

Lebanese patriarch warns of crisis without a government after Adib steps down

Updated 14 min 33 sec ago

Lebanese patriarch warns of crisis without a government after Adib steps down

  • Al-Rai said Adib’s resignation had ‘disappointed citizens, especially the youth’
  • Frustration at Adib’s failure to form government was voiced by Lebanon’s religious communities

BEIRUT: Lebanon’s top Christian cleric said on Sunday the nation faced “multiple dangers” that would be hard to weather without a government, speaking a day after the prime minister-designate quit following his failed bid to form a cabinet.
Mustapha Adib stepped down on Saturday after hitting a roadblock over how to make appointments in the sectarian system, striking a blow to a French initiative that aimed to haul the nation out of its deepest crisis since its 1975-1990 civil war.
French President Emmanuel Macron, who had pressed Lebanon’s fractious politicians to reach a consensus so that Adib was named on Aug. 31, is to due to speak about the crisis in a news conference in Paris later on Sunday.
Patriarch Bechara Boutros Al-Rai, leader of the Maronite church, Lebanon’s biggest Christian community, said Adib’s resignation had “disappointed citizens, especially the youth, who were betting on the start of change in the political class.”
Many top politicians, both Christian and Muslim, have held sway for years or even decades. Some are former warlords.
Rai said Lebanon now had to navigate “multiple dangers” without a government at the helm.
Rai’s comments were echoed on the streets of Beirut, where mass protests erupted in 2019 as years of mismanagement, corruption and mounting debts finally led to economic collapse, paralysing banks and sending the currency into freefall.
“There needs to be fundamental change. We need new people. We need new blood,” said 24-year-old Hassan Amer, serving coffee from a roadside cafe in the capital, which was hammered by a huge port blast on Aug. 4 that killed almost 200 people.
In nearby streets, walls were still plastered with graffiti from the protests, including the popular call for sweeping out the old guard: “All of them means all of them.”
Frustration at the failure of Adib, a Sunni Muslim, to form a government was voiced by many across Lebanon’s religious communities. Prime ministers under Lebanon’s sectarian power-sharing system must be Sunnis.
A senior Shiite Muslim cleric, Sheikh Ahmed Qabalan, said on Saturday Adib’s resignation as the economy collapsed could “be described as a disaster,” calling for national unity to deliver reforms, the state news agency reported.
The cabinet formation effort stumbled after Lebanon’s two main Shiite groups, Amal and the heavily armed Iran-backed Hezbollah, demanded they name several ministers, including finance, a key role as the nation draws up a rescue plan.
Saad Al-Hariri, a former prime minister and leading Sunni politician, said in a statement he would not be involved in naming any new premier and said the French plan was “the last and only opportunity to halt Lebanon’s collapse.”
A French roadmap laid out a reform program for a new government to help trigger billions of dollars of international aid.