Yemen

The UN-sponsored peace talks between the Yemeni factions which took place in Kuwait for more than two months have come to an end without a breakthrough.

YemenA new round of talks is likely in one month, maybe in other country not Kuwait, according to the UN envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed.

Talks will continue but, actually, the crux of the problem lies in failure to reach a political deal.

The UN has sponsored talks between the Yemeni government and the Houthi group and its allies several times. In each time, the talks totally failed.

Observers argued that there is no peace at sight at the short-and medium-terms.

The Yemeni factions along with the international community backing the peace process have not come to the point yet which addresses the main reason for conflict, negative roles of regional powers and the gap between the factions, they said.

Observers see that the main reason for the conflict is the focus of all factions on their quotas in power at the expense of the public interests and the country’s stability.

Yaseen Al-Tamimi, a political writer and analyst, said the Yemeni factions are very stubborn and don’t like to make concessions.

“There will not be peace if the factions can’t make concessions and put the country’s interest above anything else,” he said.

“Another roadblock to peace in Yemen is the roles of regional powers that are inflaming and investing in chaos. These powers are using Yemen as a card in their struggle for influence in the region,” he said.

“Hence, it seems only a fair war will lead to peace in Yemen. The Saudi-led coalition should focus its intervention on a war that leads to restoring legitimacy and peace in the country. There should be moral considerations to avoid multiple goals which have apparently turned the intervention into a destructive approach,” Al-Tamimi added.

Fuad Alsalahi, a political sociology professor at Sanaa University, said one of the key reasons for the failure of the peace talks is the inability of the UN to understand the nature of the conflict and factions in Yemen.

“The factions are exploiting this UN failure and are now maneuvering to rearrange their cards either militarily or politically,” Alsalahi said.

“The political landscape is very messy which means peaceful solutions now or in the future will only lead to temporary truces. The chaos will continue in one way or another,” he added.

Days before the talks ended, the Houthi group and ex-president Ali Abdullah Saleh formed a political council to run cities under their control.

Though the move has been criticized, observers said this council comes to deepen the alliance between the Houthi group and the former ruling party, the GPC.

Adel Al-Shuja’a, a political analyst, said the council was a good sign as it comes in line with UN resolutions on Yemen.

“It called for disbanding the Houthi supreme revolutionary committee and constitutional declaration that the UN insisted on the Houthis to disband,” he said.

“Moreover, the council reflects the readiness of the Houthis and the GPC to continue peace talks. It will be the official body at talks,” Al-Shuja’a elaborated.

Nonetheless, in every conflict, peace must come in the end, observers said.

Ahmed Al-Jabr, a political analyst, said “the factions have not yet become completely exhausted to think of peace.”

“All signs indicate there won’t be permanent peace at the moment. If the UN pushes for more talks, all they can reach will be a temporary ceasefire,” Al-Jabr said.

In the meantime, military escalation will be inevitable. Actually, all factions and the Saudi-led military coalition have declared military escalation after the Kuwait talks ended. The coalition has been bombing Yemen since March 2015.

However, observers argued that the the government receiving support from the coalition can’t achieve a military victory because it is currently based outside Yemen.

“An economy meltdown, which appears so imminent, will force all to reconsider their options and reckless moves,” Al-Jabr said.

Yemen has suffered largely since the war escalated in early 2015, after the Saudi-led coalition launched the bombing campaign in particular.

An estimated 14.4 million Yemenis are food insecure, 7.6 million severely food insecure, 19.4 million lack access to safe water and sanitation, 14.1 million lack access to adequate healthcare, and around 3 million internally displaced persons (IDPs).

All investments have been suspended and most of the country’s infrastructures have been destroyed.

And the embargo imposed by the Arab coalition has deepened the suffering very much, leaving Yemen in need of key supplies. Acute shortages have forced a lot of hospitals and business to shut down.

Therefore, military escalation will only make the situation much worse. Enditem

by Fuad Rajeh, Xinhua/News Ghana

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