Senior officials from UAE, Saudi Arabia and US meet to discuss Yemen at UNGA

Trilateral gathering took place on sidelines of UN General Assembly

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken shares a light moment with Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, UAE Minister of Foreign Affairs, centre, and Saudi Arabian Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud. Image @SecBlinken via
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UAE Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken discussed the situation in Yemen at a meeting on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly on Tuesday.

The meeting came on the heels of Monday's GCC gathering, which began the week of high-level debates.

Mr Blinken said there was an “opportunity to have some dedicated time together to delve a little bit deeper even into our shared commitment to advance peace in Yemen”.

Yemen has factored heavily into Mr Blinken’s engagements this week as he met Yemeni Presidential Leadership Council President Rashad Al Alimi on Monday.

According to a summary of Tuesday's meeting released by the US State Department, the three discussed “shared regional priorities,” which included “their commitment to a durable resolution to the conflict in Yemen in close co-ordination with Yemeni parties”.

Diplomatic sources told The National that the meeting “reaffirmed the three countries’ alignment on the way forward in Yemen”.

The conflict, which began in September 2014, has calmed in recent years.

A UN-brokered ceasefire in April 2022 resulted in a reduction in fighting, which has more or less continued despite the ceasefire expiring in October 2022.

Riyadh hosted the Houthi rebels for several days of talks that concluded on Tuesday.

It was the first official visit by a Houthi delegation to the kingdom since 2014, after the Iran-backed group ousted the internationally recognised government in Sanaa.

“The meeting emphasised the kingdom's ongoing support for Yemen and its people, as well as its unwavering commitment to encourage Yemeni parties to engage in dialogue to reach a comprehensive and lasting political solution under the supervision of the United Nations,” the Saudi Press Agency said in a statement on the dialogue with the Houthis.

Mr Blinken "welcomed" the talks in Riyadh" State Department said.

The UAE, Saudi Arabia and the US agreed that “co-operation among the three governments and Yemen’s Presidential Leadership Council is essential to advancing UN-led peace efforts,” said Mr Miller.

Updated: September 20, 2023, 7:00 AM