Yemeni resistance brought Saudi-led coalition to negotiating table: Iranian MP
Although direct negotiations between Yemen's popular Houthi movement and Saudi Arabia have started since almost a month ago, progress has yet to be made in the talks between the two sides.
It has become a herculean task to predict the fate of the talks, a date for an agreement between the two sides and the conditions under which they would manage to end the conflict.
Although the talks and the trend they have continued so far reflect a willingness for long-term cease-fire on the part of Saudi Arabia, a number of obstacles such as the continuation of Yemen’s siege and sanctions on the country, still hinder a final agreement by the two sides regarding the end of the conflict.
The foundation of the negotiations between the Houthi Ansarullah movement and Saudi Arabia, known as the peace talks, was laid a few years ago. Mediated by a number of countries, the talks began in the Swedish capital of Stockholm last year.
Commenting on the talks, an Iranian MP said it was the years-long resistance of the Yemeni people that forced Saudi Arabia and the UAE into acquiescing to negotiations.
The world and, in particular, Western countries, are required to know that Saudi Arabia and the UAE have not entered the negotiations on their own initiative and for humanitarian purposes, added Mohammad-Javad Jamali Nobandegani, the deputy chairman of the Iranian Parliament's National Security and Foreign Policy Committee.
He noted that the Islamic Republic has repeatedly announced that military attack on Yemen and invasion fail to be the solution to the country’s issue.
On his recent meeting with Swedish Special Envoy to the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Peter Semneby, he said in that meeting, he stressed the same issue, in addition to appreciating Sweden’s efforts to establish peace between the two sides in Yemen.
Responding to questions regarding the doubt sometimes expressed by the Houthi Ansarullah movement about the nature and effectiveness of the peace plans and talks, the lawmaker said that was because Saudis’ actions and behavior do not correspond with their remarks on peace.
For instance, following the Stockholm Agreement concluded between the two sides in 2018, Saudi Arabia and the UAE launched airstrikes on Hodeida and continued their siege of Yemen, Jamali Nobandegani added.
He said in addition, Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman was the one responsible for killing of prominent journalist and critic Jamal Khashoggi, an old friend of the Saudi court. “Thus, how could one expect the crown to feel bad for Yemeni children who are being murdered on a daily basis?”
The other questionable issue regarding the conflict in Yemen is why no one objected to the Saudi-led coalition’s bombardment and killing of the Yemeni people and the cholera outbreak in the country, but the September 14 attack on Saudi Arabia's Aramco oil facilities in Abqaiq and Khurais led to strong international protests, the MP noted.
“This shows that the West and those who claim to be seeking to establish peace in Yemen are not being quite fair in their efforts to this end. I also believe that Saudi Arabia and the UAE are not the sole decision-makers regarding the talks.”
They are mainly the agents of Israel and the United States, the MP added.
By the time Israel and the US do not come to this conclusion that Saudis must stop their crimes in Yemen, no progress will be made in the peace talks, he emphasized.
Nevertheless, the Houthis have entered the talks in good will, Jamali Nobandegani noted, stressing that the other side should appreciate that and take advantage of the opportunity.