UN envoy meets Yemen separatist chief after uprising call

UN envoy meets Yemen separatist chief after calls for 'peaceful uprising'
2 min read
04 October, 2018
The UN's envoy to Yemen has met with the head of the southern separatists STC movement following calls for a 'peaceful uprising' against President Hadi.
The STC called for an uprising against President Hadi on Wednesday [AFP]

UN envoy Martin Griffiths met on Thursday with the head of Yemen's southern separatist movement, following the group's calls for a "peaceful uprising" against President Abd Rabbo Mansour Hadi.

Aidarous al-Zoubeidi and Griffiths met in Abu Dhabi to discuss "the UN envoy's efforts to revive [peace] talks and the participation of the Southern Transitional Council in future negotiations", his STC movement said in a statement.

The Aden-based STC has accused Hadi's government of negligence and corruption.

On Wednesday, it called for a "peaceful, popular uprising" against the Hadi government.

The STC, which calls for the reinstatement of an independent south Yemen, has gained traction in its push for self-rule over the past year.

Allied with army troops trained by the UAE, the separatists in January seized control of parts of Aden province.

Last month, UN-led peace talks failed to take off after Iran-aligned Houthi rebels refused to fly to Geneva over what they said was the international authority's failure to guarantee a safe return to the capital Sanaa for the party, which the group has controlled since 2014.

Griffiths is pushing for another round of talks between the Saudi-backed government and the Houthi rebels linked to Iran.

Nearly 10,000 people have been killed in Yemen since 2015, when Saudi Arabia and its allies joined the government's war with the Houthis.

The war has triggered what the UN calls the world's worst humanitarian crisis, with more than three-quarters of Yemen's population needing aid and 8.4 million people at risk of famine.

Southern Yemen is home to both the Hadi government and separatists, whose alliance against the Houthis has become increasingly fraught.

North and south Yemen were independent states until their unification in 1990.