Yemen’s Southern Transitional Council (STC) has welcomed a call by a Saudi-led alliance for return of the situation in the country to before the STC declared self-rule in areas under its control, and swift implementation of a power-sharing deal signed last year.
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The STC is part of the Arab alliance co-led by the UAE and Saudi Arabia fighting Iran-aligned Al Houthi militia in Yemen.
The alliance emphasised the necessity of rescinding any step violating the Riyadh pact signed between the STC and the Yemeni government last November and called for de-escalation between both sides, who are partners to the coalition.
The UAE also opposed unilateral moves and renewed support for the Riyadh accord.
A senior STC official has welcomed the coalition’s statement and stressed commitment to the Riyadh deal.
“The council emphasises the necessity of respect for the sequence mentioned in the Riyadh Agreement, especially what is pertaining to the implementation of the political and economic aspects that the legitimacy [government] sought to completely hamper,” STC spokesman Nazar Haitham said in a series of tweets early Saturday.
In November, the Yemeni government and the STC signed the Saudi-brokered pact that ended a months-long feud between both sides to refocus efforts on fighting Al Houthis.
The deal provides for forming a 24-strong government equally composed from Yemen’s southern and northern provinces, excluding Al Houthis. It also provides for the return of the government to Aden, which the pro-STC forces seized from the government troops in August.
Haitham also stressed “extreme necessity” of focusing efforts on addressing the aftermath of floods that recently hit Aden and on fighting the new coronavirus.
Aid groups fear a massive outbreak of the highly contagious ailment in impoverished Yemen, which has a rickety health system.
“The STC also confirms the necessity of respecting the southern people’s aspirations and their right to self-determination as well meeting the southern citizen’s basic needs and rights. These files are top priorities that cannot be postponed or procrastinated,” he added.
Yemen has been in the grip of a ruinous war since late 2014 when Al Houthis toppled the internationally government and captured the capital Sana’a. Months later, the Arab military coalition intervened in Yemen in response to the government’s request.
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