Saudi prince need to find a political solution to end Yemen war: Mattis

Vastavam web: There is an urgent need to find a political solution to Yemen’s war, U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis told Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on Thursday, as he voiced hope for a U.N. special envoy’s peace efforts and firmly backed Riyadh.A Saudi-led coalition intervened in neighbouring Yemen in 2015 against Iran-aligned Houthis, who had ousted the internationally recognised government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi. The civil war has killed an estimated 10,000 people.“We must also reinvigorate urgent efforts to seek a peaceful resolution to the civil war in Yemen and we support you in this regard,” Mattis said.

Earlier this year, the United Nations chief appointed former British diplomat Martin Griffiths as his new envoy charged with trying to broker peace in Yemen.Mattis praised Saudi Arabia for the “significant amounts of humanitarian aid” it had provided to civilians in Yemen. The Saudi-led coalition said earlier this year it would commit $1.5 billion in humanitarian aid for the country.On Tuesday, the U.S. Senate killed a resolution seeking an end to U.S. support for Saudi Arabia’s campaign in Yemen.

The vote was largely along party lines, although a handful of Democrats voted with the majority Republicans to kill the measure, and a handful of Republicans supported the failed effort to let it move ahead.During Senate debate before the vote, some backers called the three-year-long conflict in Yemen a “humanitarian catastrophe,” which they blamed on the Saudis.Pentagon spokeswoman Dana White said that during the meeting, the crown prince talked about increasing cooperation with the U.S. military, including training.

President Donald Trump gave a warm welcome to the crown prince during a meeting at the White House earlier this week and credited U.S. defence sales to Saudis with boosting American jobs.The United States has said it is seeing signs of interest from elements of Afghanistan’s Taliban insurgency about talks with Kabul to end the more than 16-year-old war.

White, the Pentagon spokeswoman, said the Saudi crown prince was “quite positive” that Gulf countries involved in a long-running dispute would be able to move past it.