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Grundberg in Muscat to Pressure Houthis to End Taiz Siege, Open Roads

Grundberg in Muscat to Pressure Houthis to End Taiz Siege, Open Roads

Wednesday, 1 June, 2022 - 10:00
United Nations envoy for Yemen Hans Grundberg speaks during a news conference in Sanaa, April 13, 2022. (Reuters)

UN Envoy for Yemen Hans Grundberg is racing to garner approval for extending the humanitarian truce between the Yemeni government and the Houthi militias. However, the government is insisting on Houthis lifting the siege of Taiz and complying with their obligations under the truce.

On Tuesday, Grundberg met with the spokesman of the Houthi group and its chief negotiator, Muhammad Abdul Salam Fleitah. The two met in the presence of Omani officials in the Sultanate’s capital, Muscat.

According to his office, Grundberg stressed “the need to reopen roads in Taiz and other areas of Yemen, to renew the armistice, and to take serious steps towards ending the conflict in a comprehensive manner.”

While the Yemeni government confirms that it has fulfilled all its obligations regarding the implementation of the two-month truce that began on April 2, Houthis are still blockading Taiz.

The Yemeni government has complied with the terms of the armistice, reopened Sanaa airport to commercial flights, as well as having permitted the flow of fuel to the port of Hodeidah.

Grundberg on Monday held meetings with the country's Presidential Leadership Council (PLC) in the southern port city of Aden. This is the third visit within a month for the UN envoy to the Yemeni interim capital.

“Rashad Muhammad Al-Alimi, Chairman of the PLC, along with the two Vice-Presidents of the PLC, Aidarous Al-Zubaidi, and Dr. Abdullah Al-Alimi, met today, Monday, the Special Envoy of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Hans Grundberg, on his third visit this month to the temporary capital Aden,” reported state news agency, Saba.

Al-Alimi and his two deputies were briefed by the UN envoy on the developments of the ongoing efforts to implement the truce, and the opportunities to extend it and build on it to push the militias towards a comprehensive and just peace in accordance with the agreed local, regional and international references.

Grundberg presented the results of the first phase of negotiations, regarding the opening of the crossings of Taiz and other provinces, in which the Houthis continued their intransigence and their failure to implement the terms of the truce related to opening roads in Taiz and other provinces in order to alleviate the suffering of the Yemeni people.

During the meeting, the PLC chairman stressed the importance of pushing the militia to fulfill its obligations under the truce agreement, including opening all crossings, and paying employees’ salaries from the revenues of oil derivatives ships arriving at the ports of Hodeidah.

Al-Alimi affirmed the continued support of the leadership and the legitimate government for the UN efforts to implement the terms of the truce, and to provide more initiatives to alleviate the human suffering of the Yemeni people, and not to compromise on any of their rights guaranteed under the constitution and relevant international laws.

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