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Yemeni Demands to Deter Houthis, Set Time Frame for Renewing Armistice

Yemeni Demands to Deter Houthis, Set Time Frame for Renewing Armistice

Sunday, 13 November, 2022 - 09:45
Houthis during a drone show in Sanaa (AP)

The international community is confident that there are no military solutions to the Yemeni conflict, and there is no alternative to supporting the global efforts to renew the faltering truce, despite Houthi threats and the various attacks on local energy sources and oil export ports.

The Iranian-backed militias are betting on time to obtain new gains at the economic, military, and political levels. However, Yemeni observers believe that a time limit must be determined to reach an agreement to renew the ceasefire.

They indicate that the group seeks to establish its state in the north, which it uses to target the rest of the Yemeni regions and implement Iran's agenda in the area, including threatening regional countries and international shipping routes.

- International Discontent

The growing international anger over the militias' behavior has been noticeable, especially after the recent attacks on oil export ports in Hadhramaut and Shabwa.

The recent tripartite French-US-British statement and the EU statement made it clear that the Western countries are confident that the Houthi militias do not want peace. This prompted them to adopt a new strategy to deal with the group if it continues its terrorist escalation and ignores the calls for peace.

It was also clear from the statement of the British ambassador to Yemen, Richard Oppenheim.

Oppenheim warned the militia leaders, describing what the group is doing as a kind of siege with intimidation, recalling that the British role, in particular, and the West in general, aims to end the conflict in Yemen.

- A truce is not the end goal

Yemeni researcher and academic Faris al-Bayl stated that renewing the truce should not be the end goal, even if the international community focuses on that.

During an interview with Asharq Al-Awsat, Bayl pointed out that the ceasefire seems like a "lifeline" for the UN envoy that saves his face or could be the extent of the UN's solution for the Yemeni crisis.

He noted that it needs to be clarified what the envoy has planned for the post-ceasefire era.

The researcher noted that the armistice was among the confidence-building measures between the parties and the ability to deal with ​​negotiation, indicating that it was only a preparatory measure for what came after.

However, it has become the goal that the envoy wants to reach, and unfortunately for him, it did not succeed, and therefore his efforts are focused entirely on the ceasefire only.

He asserted that the Houthi militia is far from agreeing on anything.

- Houthi tactic

The Houthi intransigence and their escalation are nothing more than a "tactic," according to Yemeni researcher Mahmoud al-Taher.

Taher said in his interview with Asharq Al-Awsat that the UN envoy will continue with his useless methods without acknowledging or admitting that he did not find a way to reach safety.

Houthis are deliberately keeping him lost, intending to prolong the war, said Taher, adding that the current situation has become of the international community begging for peace, even though they are not worthy of it.

Taher stresses that there should be a time limit for the Houthis' acceptance of the proposals and not negotiating to give the group more time to amend the agreed propositions and obtain new gains.

He cited the negotiations that saw several concessions for the Houthis, which the group uses to pressure the Yemeni tribes and people.

- Time doesn't matter

Contrary to what Taher suggests, Yemeni journalist Abdullah al-Sanami believes that there is no point in setting time limits and that it is natural for international efforts to continue.

He told Asharq Al-Awsat that the UN envoy has no choice but to seek a truce and try to convince the militias of it, noting that setting a time frame is not essential to persuade Houthis to renew the ceasefire.

The truce is effective, and all the militias are doing now is improving their negotiating position and their position before their supporters, according to Sanami.

He explains that the international community believes a political solution can solve the crisis, and all its choices depend on the dynamics of the global geopolitical conflict in the region.

- Possible solutions

Yemeni researcher and writer Abdul Sattar al-Shamiri believes that the international community has many possible solutions, including activating previous decisions, which fall under Chapter VII.

He also suggested sanctioning Iran and supporting the coalition that backs legitimacy to activate the military efforts.

Speaking to Asharq Al-Awsat, Shamiri said he believes that among the possible solutions is granting the legitimacy the confidence to move forward with the military option, assuming it is necessary to reconsider this possibility.

Shamiri asserted that relying on the international community to solve the Yemeni issue has become a losing bet, adding that the UN is not a charity.

Bayl suggested that the international community changes its mechanism in dealing with Houthis, adding that it possesses several tools to pressure the group, including financial prosecution, sanctioning the militia leaders, and restricting their movements.

Taher proposed that the UN envoy must announce his inability to arrange consultations if Houthis' rejection persists, adding that the UN has many tools within its use, such as designating the group as terrorist and forming an international coalition under Chapter VII.

The Security Council has the right to form a global force to deter terrorism, especially since condemnations are not enough to prevent the militia.

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