Houthis accept invitation to attend Geneva talks

Iranian backed Shiite Houthis accept invitation to partake in peace talks in Geneva

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Updated Jul 28, 2015

The Iranian backed Shiite Houthis have accepted an invitation to take part in the UN brokered Geneva talks set to take place on June 14 seeking a diplomatic solution to the ongoing conflict in Yemen.

Daifallah al-Shami, a senior Houthi official, told Reuters that "The group will participate in the Geneva talks and it supports without preconditions the efforts of the United Nations to organize Yemeni-Yemeni dialog."

The Houthis’ decision to attend the talks comes hours after exiled President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi announced a delegation from the Yemeni government would attend the Geneva talks.

Backed by Iran, the Houthis took control of the Yemeni capital of Sanaa in September through an armed uprising, causing the Yemeni government to flee to Aden after the group attempted to disband it in January.

Houthi forces began a military campaign to take Aden in April, forcing the government to escape Yemen to neighbouring ally Saudi Arabia, where it has set up its office in the country’s capital Riyadh.

Pro-government forces continue to clash with Houthi forces across the country as an Arab coalition led by Saudi Arabia launches air strikes to prevent further gains by the Houthi militia.