Speaking in a meeting with Martin Griffiths, the United Nations Secretary‑General’s Special Envoy for Yemen, on Tuesday, Houthi said an initiative recently proposed by President of Yemen’s Supreme Political Council Mahdi al-Mashat attests to the movement’s efforts for peace.
He also referred to the recent release of coalition prisoners by Ansarullah and said it is important that these humanitarian gestures are reciprocated by the other side and ultimately lead to the release of all prisoners.
Mashat announced on September 20 that Ansarullah will stop aiming missiles and drones at Saudi Arabia, adding that the movement expected the kingdom to reciprocate by stopping all attacks against them and warning that a continuation of the war could lead to “dangerous developments”.
“We declare ceasing to target the Saudi Arabian territory with military drones, ballistic missiles and all other forms of weapons, and we wait for a reciprocal move from them,” he said on Al Masirah TV.
“We reserve the right to respond if they fail to reciprocate positively to this initiative,” he said, adding that the continuation of the Yemen war “will not benefit any side”.
His announcement came a week after a major attack on two Saudi oil facilities that halved the kingdom’s production.
Saudi Arabia and a number of its regional allies launched a devastating campaign against Yemen in March 2015, with the goal of bringing the government of fugitive former president Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi back to power and crushing the Houthi Ansarullah movement.
The US-based Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED), a nonprofit conflict-research organization, estimates that the war has claimed more than 91,000 lives over the past four and a half years.
The war has also taken a heavy toll on the country’s infrastructure, destroying hospitals, schools, and factories. The UN says over 24 million Yemenis are in dire need of humanitarian aid, including 10 million suffering from extreme levels of hunger.