Pakistan has greeted recent diplomatic efforts towards resolving the ongoing crisis in Yemen, commending the role played by Saudi Arabia in reinforcing the initiatives of the Sultanate of Oman and the UN Special Envoy for Yemen. In a statement issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Monday, Pakistan praised Saudi Arabia’s efforts towards finding a peaceful resolution to the Yemeni crisis, expressing belief that they would promote peace, stability, and development in the region.
The Yemeni crisis has been ongoing since 2014 when Houthi rebels seized control of the capital, Sanaa, and forced President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi to flee to Saudi Arabia. The conflict has escalated into a devastating war that has resulted in a humanitarian crisis in Yemen. Saudi Arabia leads a coalition that has been battling the Iranian-aligned Houthi group since 2015 and is seeking a permanent ceasefire agreement to end its military involvement in the war.
The statement from Pakistan comes amid renewed diplomatic efforts to resolve the Yemeni crisis, with several Yemeni factions vying for influence. The Houthis are the de facto authorities in northern Yemen, while the internationally recognised government is represented by the Political Leadership Council (PLC), which was formed under Saudi auspices last year and took overpower from Yemen’s president-in-exile.
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The conflict is widely seen as one of several proxy wars between Saudi Arabia and Iran, the region’s major powers. Riyadh and Tehran last month agreed to restore diplomatic ties that were severed in 2016, raising hopes that Yemen’s peace process would see progress, as Saudi Arabia moves to manage regional tensions and to focus on economic priorities.
On Monday, Saudi Arabia released another 104 detainees to Yemen, the International Committee of the Red Cross and a Saudi-led coalition said, in a unilateral move that follows simultaneous detainee exchanges between Yemen’s warring parties. The Saudi military coalition said the additional release was to support dialogue in continuing efforts to end Yemen’s conflict.