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article imageYemen government says ready to attend UN talks

By AFP     Aug 3, 2018 in World

Yemen's internationally recognised government is ready to attend UN-brokered talks next month in Geneva but is "not optimistic", a government official said on Friday.

"We will go but we are not optimistic," the official told AFP on condition of anonymity.

He said there remained "huge differences" between the government and rebels.

The UN envoy to Yemen, Martin Griffiths, on Thursday told the Security Council that the United Nations will invite Yemen's warring sides for talks in Geneva on September 6 to discuss a framework for peace negotiations.

Griffiths said "a political solution" to end the war in Yemen was "available" and urged world powers to support the new push for peace negotiations.

There has yet been no response from the rebels.

UN-brokered political talks on Yemen broke down in 2016 amid demands for a rebel withdrawal from key cities and power-sharing with the Saudi-backed government.

Since 2015, Saudi Arabia has been leading a military campaign to restore the government to power and push back the Shiite Huthi rebels, who hold the capital Sanaa.

The war in the impoverished country has since left nearly 10,000 people dead and unleashed what the United Nations describes as the world's worst humanitarian crisis.

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