Washington is urging Yemen’s National Salvation Government, the NCG, to start negotiations with the Saudi-appointed parallel government currently controlling Yemen’s southern regions to “resolve” the 9-year war.
“We urge Ansarallah to seize this unprecedented opportunity and sit with the government to draw a prosperous future for Yemen,” said U.S. Special Envoy Tim Lenderking, who recently ended a regional tour. “We are working to build an international and regional consensus to unify efforts. This is our opportunity to achieve the desired change in the country.
“We remain optimistic about achieving further progress towards peace, and it is the responsibility of the parties to the conflict to make a difficult settlement,” he added. “We are committed to maintaining our efforts, and our goal is to support a stable and more prosperous Yemen.”
Lenderking also called for Yemen’s warring parties to agree on paying the salaries of public servants.
The Saudis refused an agreement earlier this year to spend revenue from looted Yemeni oil to pay all civil servant’s salaries, who haven’t been paid in nine years. These salaries being paid is one of the most crucial humanitarian terms in the negotiations to end the war, along with the blockade of Yemen’s airport and main seaport.
Despite a ceasefire brokered by the United Nations that expired last October, there has yet to be any kind of serious peace throughout Yemen since Saudi Arabia and Iran normalized ties last March. Since then, there have been Omani-mediated discussions.
Last week, Abdul Malik al-Ajri, a member of Ansarallah’s negotiating team, announced that a round of decisive talks would take place soon.
“The endeavor for the next round of negotiations will be decisive in putting an end to the suffering of the Yemeni people, especially in terms of humanitarian benefits,” he said.
An Omani delegation arrived in Sanaa just over a week ago for discussions with Ansarallah about moving forward with a new peace process.
The U.S. has previously been blamed by Yemeni officials for sabotaging negotiations to keep Western forces in the poorest countries throughout the Arab world.