Zarif urges end to Saudi-led war on Yemen
Islam News – Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif says war is not a solution to the crisis in Yemen, stressing that the Saudi-imposed blockade on the impoverished country must end.
In a meeting in Tehran on Tuesday, the Iranian foreign minister and United Nations Special Envoy for Yemen Martin Griffiths discussed various dimensions of the crisis and possible ways to achieve peace and stability in Yemen.
The top Iranian diplomat emphasized that the current situation in Yemen, which has exposed the people to a humanitarian catastrophe after six years of war, would only be resolved through a peaceful diplomatic approach.
The UN envoy, for his part, briefed the Iranian foreign minister on the outcome of his talks with relevant parties on the crisis.
Saudi Arabia and a number of its regional allies, including the United Arab Emirates, launched the campaign against Yemen in March 2015.
The Saudi-led campaign has left hundreds of thousands of Yemenis dead, and displaced millions. It has also taken a heavy toll on the country’s infrastructure, destroying hospitals, schools, and factories.
The siege on Yemen includes the closure of Sana’a International Airport, which has made it almost impossible for food and medical supplies to reach the poor.
The Saudi-led coalition has also been enforcing a tight naval blockade on Yemen, particularly on Hudaydah, which acts as a lifeline for the impoverished nation, since August 2015, five months after it started the war.
Also on Tuesday, Zarif met with Jean Arnault, the UN secretary general’s personal envoy on Afghanistan and regional issues, in Tehran.
The Iranian foreign minister outlined the Islamic Republic’s stance on promoting security in Afghanistan.
The top Iranian diplomat stressed the importance of safeguarding the Afghan people’s achievements made in recent years, particularly in attaining their basic rights.
The UN diplomat, for his part, said the current issues in Afghanistan can be settled through collective measures and that he has focused his efforts on ways to strengthen collective cooperation.
The United States and its allies overthrew the Taliban regime shortly after the 2001 invasion of Afghanistan.
US forces have remained bogged down in the country through the presidencies of George W. Bush, Barack Obama, Donald Trump, and now Joe Biden.
All foreign troops were supposed to have been withdrawn by May 1, as part of an agreement that the US had reached with the Taliban in the Qatari capital last year. But Biden last month pushed that date back to September 11.
The Taliban have warned that the passing of the May 1 deadline for a complete withdrawal “opened the way for” the militants to take every counteraction they deemed appropriate against foreign forces in the county.