UAE official Gargash meets US special envoy to Yemen

The diplomatic adviser to the UAE President Anwar Gargash met with the US Special Envoy for Yemen Tim Lenderking on Saturday, the official WAM news agency reported.

The officials met five days after Yemen’s Iran-backed Houthis attacked the country’s capital city, Abu Dhabi.

Lenderking reiterated that the US stands with the UAE in the face of “the Houthi terrorist attack,” WAM reported.

The UAE official also held a phone call with Hans Grundberg, the Special Envoy of the Secretary-General of the United Nations to Yemen on Friday, where the duo reviewed the nature of the Iran-backed Houthi attack in Abu Dhabi that led to a fuel tanker explosion killing three.

In both these instances, Gargash stressed the need for the international community to take a “firm stance against these hostile and terrorist acts that threaten international peace and security.”

He stated that the group repeatedly violated international laws and agreements, primarily, the Stockholm Agreement, which Gargash says is evident in the port of Hodeida which is reportedly being used for “maritime piracy and war financing.”

According to the WAM report, Gargash renewed his appreciation for the US’ position which condemned and denounced the attack and called for working with the US and the international community to stop the Houthi disregard for the security and stability of the region.

Referring to the position of the UN Security Council, which unanimously condemned the attacks, Gargash says that the Iran-backed militia requires a “serious international position towards the encroachment on the security of the countries of the region and the Yemeni people, and their continuous threat to international maritime navigation.”

The UAE official also reiterated that “appropriate international pressure” may help reach a ceasefire agreement and aid in finding a political solution to the Yemeni crisis.

“The Houthis have never committed to any agreements and pledges, and will not do so without clear international pressure,” WAM quoted Gargash as saying.

The Iran-backed militia frequently target civilian areas and energy facilities in Saudi Arabia with explosive-laden drones and ballistic missiles.

The Arab Coalition has been carrying out attacks against legitimate military Houthi targets in Yemen in recent months, warning civilians to not approach or gather around the targeted sites beforehand.

However, the recent drone attack in Abu Dhabi marks the first reported Iran-backed Houthi incident on UAE soil.

Lenderking’s Gulf visit

It was announced earlier this week that Lenderking is heading to the Gulf and London to “reinvigorate peace efforts,” the US State Department said announced.

“The Special Envoy and his team will press the parties to de-escalate militarily and seize the new year to participate fully in an inclusive UN-led peace process,” the State Department said ahead of his visit.

He will focus on the “urgent need to mitigate the dire humanitarian and economic crises facing Yemenis.”

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