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Munir al-Mawri

US and GCC agree to 'peaceful' resolution in Yemen

Foreign ministers have expressed support for a peaceful political dialogue in Yemen [Getty]

Date of publication: 1 October, 2015

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John Kerry and his Gulf counterparts have agreed that political dialogue is the only way to reach a sustainable solution in Yemen.

The US State Department has announced that Secretary of State John Kerry and his Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) counterparts had agreed that peaceful political dialogue was the only way to reach a sustainable solution to the Yemeni crisis.

In a statement following the fifth ministerial meeting of the US-GCC Strategic Cooperation Forum held in New York on Wednesday, the State Department said that ministers "reiterated their support for the efforts of the UN Special Envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed to resume a fully inclusive, Yemeni-led, peaceful political dialogue".

The ministers also welcomed the return of "representatives of the legitimate government of Yemen" to Aden, including President Abed-Rabo Mansour Hadi, and called for an immediate end to the violence by the Houthis and forces loyal to Ali Abdullah Saleh.

The public welcome of President Hadi's return to Aden by the US and GCC puts Hadi in a difficult position, as he is now forced to return from New York to Aden instead of Riyadh, despite the security risks it entails, as Hadi is the top target for both the Houthi and Saleh camps.

Additionally, Hadi faces the no-less-dangerous threats of extremist groups that control considerable areas in the governorates of Aden and Hadhramaut.

The foreign ministers also strongly condemned the violent and destabilising tactics of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and the Islamic State group's (IS) supposed affiliates in Yemen, noting the threat these groups pose both to the people of Yemen and the region.

Regarding the humanitarian situation in Yemen, the State Department said the ministers reaffirmed the call by the UN Security Council for all sides to comply with humanitarian laws and take all feasible precautions to minimise harm to civilians.

The US-GCC Strategic Cooperation Forum expressed its commitment to working with international partners to allow for swift access to humanitarian assistance and commercial goods vetted by the UN and its partners, including fuel, to all parts of Yemen through all of Yemen's ports in order to respond to the urgent needs of all Yemeni people.

The United States had previously called for commercial ships headed to Yemen to be exempt from being searched - unless there were logical suspicions that the vessels were transporting weaponry.

The ministers also called on the international community to increase their humanitarian assistance to Yemen.

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