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article imageYemen rebels say willing to attend UN talks

By AFP     Aug 4, 2018 in World

A member of the political wing of Yemen's Huthi rebels said Saturday the insurgents were willing to attend UN-brokered talks, although they had low expectations of a positive outcome.

Salim Meghles said the Ansarullah (Supporters of God) political wing is "not opposed to such consultations" which are aimed at "reaching a general framework for negotiations".

"We are not opposed to travelling to any neutral country to take part in such consultations," he told AFP.

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.

Meghles cast doubt over the expected meeting saying he did not sense "any serious or real stance by the aggressors towards reaching a political solution".

He was referring to the Saudi-led coalition that has intervened in Yemen since 2015 to restore the internationally recognised government to power, which has been driven out of the capital Sanaa by the rebels.

A government official on Friday said the Saudi-backed government was ready to attend the Geneva talks.

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

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.

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