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Yemen’s Ansarullah turns down GCC invitation for talks with Saudi Arabia in Riyadh

Supporters of Yemen's popular Ansarullah resistance movement hold up their rifles as they rally in Sana’a, Yemen, on September 21, 2021. (Photo by Reuters)

Yemen’s popular Ansarullah resistance movement has declined to attend talks to be held by the Persian Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) at the regional union’s headquarters in Riyadh, stressing that it will welcome talks to discuss a peaceful settlement to the ongoing conflict if the venue is a “neutral country”, and that the priority is lifting “arbitrary” restrictions on Yemeni ports and Sana’a airport.

Mohammed Ali al-Houthi, a top-ranking Ansarullah official and a member of Yemen's Supreme Political Council, wrote in a post published on his Twitter page that a solution to the Yemeni crisis would be within reach in case members of the Saudi-led military coalition and their Takfiri militants demonstrated a genuine will for peace.

“Riyadh is a party in the war not a mediator,” Houthi highlighted. 

The senior Ansarullah official said Saudi Arabia and its regional allies, which are involved in a devastating military campaign against Yemen, must feel ashamed for their actions and must put an end to the current fuel crisis in Yemen that has been triggered by a combination of tighter restrictions on fuel shipments into the country’s Red Sea ports and long holding delays.

Houthi said Yemen’s fuel crisis as a result of the continued detention of Yemen-bound tankers is badly hurting the Yemeni nation.

Abdulmalik al-Ajri, another senior Ansarullah official, also stated that his group is seriously interested in the establishment of comprehensive and just peace.

He sharply rebuked the Saudi-led coalition for its cruel and inhumane treatment of Yemenis, stating that the people have been unfairly treated by the alliance because of their race or ethnicity.

“Peace is sacred to us. We will welcome a fair and just peace once we come across it, no matter the initiative is developed in the East or in the West,” he tweeted.

Moreover, Yemeni Information Minister Zaifullah al-Shami said “the Saudi-led coalition has intensified its aggressive attacks against Yemen.”

He said the parties involved in the bloody Saudi-led onslaught against Yemen are attempting to escape the repercussions of the war, which entered its eighth year last Tuesday.

Shami said those involved in the bloodshed against the Yemenis are financing their Takfiri mercenaries.

‘Saudi-led coalition is not serious about peace’

Additionally, Yemen's Deputy Foreign Minister Hussein al-Ezzi said the Saudi-led coalition continues to dither when it comes to stopping the war and establishment of peace.

“No one is deceived. This is not good... Peace and war are two different paths; each of which requires special behavior and clear indications,” Ezzi tweeted, commenting on the GCC’s intention to invite the Ansarullah movement and other Yemeni parties for consultations in Riyadh this month.

“Unfortunately, the opposite side is still indecisive about peace and left us with no option but to either surrender or fight back. Certainly, we do not want either of them,” he said.

“Only peace is all we want (for them and ourselves). This is what differentiates us,” Ezzi said.

Saudi Arabia launched the devastating war against Yemen in March 2015 in collaboration with a number of its allies and with arms and logistics support from the US and several Western states.

The objective was to bring back to power the former Riyadh-backed regime and crush the popular Ansarullah resistance movement, which has been running state affairs in the absence of an effective government in Yemen.

The war has stopped well short of all of its goals, despite killing hundreds of thousands of Yemenis and turning the entire country into the scene of the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.

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