UN-brokered Yemen peace talks collapse in Geneva

Peace talks end without deal in Geneva, UN envoy expresses optimism

Photo by: AP
Photo by: AP

Updated Jul 28, 2015

The Yemen peace talks in Geneva ended on Friday without a deal as the Saudi-led coalition launched further strikes on the Houthi-held areas in Yemen.

A UN official said on Friday the talks aimed at brokering a ceasefire between Yemen’s exiled government and the Houthi rebels hit a deadlock.

“There was no kind of agreement reached,” said the UN’s special envoy for Yemen, Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed.

But he said there were “positive signs,” stressing that both sides acknowledged the need for a ceasefire.

The United Nations estimates show that around 20 million Yemenis are in need of aid.

While the five-day UN brokered talks failed to bring a ceasefire, Ahmed expressed optimism referring to “a certain willingness from all parties.”

"We managed to get suggestions from both sides that we can build upon in coming days in order to reach a permanent agreement," he added.

Iranian-backed Houthis seized the capital Sanaa in September, forcing the President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi to flee to the neighbouring Saudi Arabia.

The exiled government of Yemen, which is now in the Saudi capital of Riyadh, says Houthi rebels must withdraw from the territories they seized while the rebels have demanded an immediate halt to air strikes before they reach a ceasefire.

Meanwhile, Saudi-led air strikes pounded the Houthi rebels in Yemen, killing at least 10 civilians, witnesses said.

A Saudi-led coalition began on March 26 an extensive air campaign targeting Houthi-held cities across Yemen.

More than 2,600 civilians and rebels have been killed since the attacks began in March.

TRTWorld and agencies