Zarif renews call for quick end to Saudi attack on Yemen

April 18, 2015 - 0:0

TEHRAN – Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has called for an immediate end to Saudi Arabia’s raids on the Yemeni people and infrastructure.

He made the remarks in a phone conversation with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Thursday.

He also highlighted the importance of sending humanitarian aid to the “defenseless” people of Yemen.

The Iranian foreign minister also said that Iran is ready to help end crisis in Yemen.

Elsewhere in his remarks, Zarif highlighted the necessity of dialogue among the conflicting sides in Yemen.

The UN secretary general thanked Iran for efforts to end crisis in Yemen peacefully.

Ban also said medicine and food should be sent to Yemen immediately.

---------FM says ‘foreign interference in Yemen must stop’

Zarif has also said the conflict in Yemen must be resolved internally, Euronews reported on Friday.

“We should have an inter-Yemeni dialogue, intra-Yemeni dialogue, dialogue among Yemenis,” he noted.

In an exclusive interview, Zarif discouraged foreign involvement in the ongoing battle between Saudi-backed forces loyal to Yemen’s President Hadi and Shia Houthi rebels.

“Others should not participate in the dialogue,” Zarif responded. “This is not a negotiation between the Yemenis and foreigners, nor is it a negotiation between foreign powers. Foreign powers should not set conditions for the future of Yemen, nor should they engage in negotiations. What they need to do is facilitate the dialogue among various Yemeni groups. And that is what we are prepared to do.”

At a conference in Madrid on Tuesday Iran’s foreign minister laid out a four-point Yemen peace plan. Zarif proposed a ceasefire, humanitarian assistance, an intra-Yemeni dialogue, and a broad-based government to end the conflict.

“This issue should be resolved by the Yemenis... Iran and Saudi Arabia need to talk but we cannot talk to determine the future of Yemen,” he said at the conference.

In a speech to a security conference in Moscow on Thursday the Iranian Defense Minister Hossein Dehqan said Saudi Arabia, by attacking Yemen, has prepared the ground for its “disintegration” and failures which cannot be compensated.

Dehqan also predicted that Saudi Arabia is repeating the mistake of Saddam Hussein by attacking its neighbors. “A destiny like Saddam Hussein will await” the Saudis, he stated.