Millions of people across Yemen have vowed a harsh response to any act of aggression by the Saudi-led coalition against their crisis-stricken country, as they marked Ashura, which commemorates the martyrdom anniversary of Imam Hussein (AS), the third Shia Imam and the grandson of the Prophet Mohammad (PBUH).
“We are warning the [Saudi-led] coalition of aggression that our fingers are on the trigger despite the two-month renewal of the UN-brokered truce. We are preparing our forces in order to confront your aggression, blockade and arrogance,” the Yemeni Shia mourners said in a joint statement on Monday, stressing they will never surrender to the the Saudi-led bombing campaign and brutal siege.
“Our struggle against the Saudi-led aggression is a religious, humanitarian and national duty. Anyone who fails to honor such a commitment or tries to wriggle out of it has undercut his religious identity indeed,” they noted.
We will spare no efforts to stand up against the Saudi-led air campaign, no matter what the extent of challenges and the level of required sacrifices would be. We will never give in as capitulation translates into the loss of our nation’s freedom, independence, dignity, religious values and principles, and future,” the statement read.
The Yemeni Shia mourners also vowed to stand by freedom-loving and revolutionary nations, and stressed they will fight off oppressors and aggressors, particularly the United States, Israel and their agents, until they emerge victorious.
Yemen’s warring sides agreed on Tuesday to renew a two-month truce that was expiring, despite the international pressure for an extended and expanded deal.
This truce extension includes a commitment from the parties to intensify negotiations to reach an expanded truce agreement as soon as possible,” United Nations Special Envoy for Yemen Hans Grundberg said in a statement.
Grundberg had been pushing for a six-month truce with additional measures, according to the Reuters news agency, but both Yemen's Saudi-backed authorities, based in Aden and led by the Presidential Council, and the popular Ansarullah resistance movement have had grievances about the implementation of the existing truce deal, and mistrust runs deep.
Saudi Arabia launched the devastating war on Yemen in March 2015 in collaboration with its Arab allies and with arms and logistics support from the US and other Western states.
The objective was to reinstall the Riyadh-friendly regime of Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi and crush the Ansarullah resistance movement, which has been running state affairs in the absence of a functional government in Yemen.
While the Saudi-led coalition has failed to meet any of its objectives, the war has killed hundreds of thousands of Yemenis and spawned the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.
Yemenis decry latest Israeli air raids on Gaza, voice support for Palestinians
Elsewhere in their statement on Monday, Yemenis strongly denounced the latest Israeli onslaught against the Gaza Strip, targeted killings of commanders with the Palestinian Islamic Jihad resistance movement, and repeated desecrations of the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in the occupied al-Quds.
We support the right of Palestine to respond to Israeli attacks, and call on the international community and freedom-loving Muslims to stand by oppressed Palestinians.
“We underline our adherence to our fundamental and principled position as to resistance against Israel and Zionists, and the struggle will go on until they are completely defeated and the entire Palestinian territories are liberated,” the statement also read.
The Yemenis also expressed their unwavering support for Lebanon against Israeli threats, and paid tribute to Hezbollah resistance movement.
“We reiterate that the prowess established by Hezbollah is not simply confined to Lebanon. It benefits the entire region and paves the ground for operations of the resistance front,” the statement concluded.