Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir has said his country is willing to reach a ceasefire agreement in Yemen if Houthi rebels also agree.
Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said on Monday that his country was willing to reach a ceasefire agreement in Yemen if Houthi rebels also agree, adding that he was cynical about peace efforts after previous failures.
He added that the officials responsible for an air raid this month on a funeral gathering in Sanaa would be “held responsible” and that the victims’ families would be compensated.
The Saudi-led campaign in Yemen has come under heavy criticism, even more so since the air raid killed 140 people according to a United Nations’ estimate and 82 according to the Houthis.
The coalition has admitted that “bad information” and a “breakdown in communication” led to the bombing of the wake.
On Sunday, the United States, UK and the UN peace envoy to Yemen urged the warring parties in the country’s civil war to declare a ceasefire within days.
“This is the time to implement a ceasefire unconditionally and then move to the negotiating table,” US Secretary of State John Kerry said after high-level diplomatic talks in London.
Kerry was speaking after meeting UN peace envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed and his opposite numbers from the UK, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
The top US diplomat said he, UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and Cheikh Ahmed are calling for the ceasefire to begin “as rapidly as possible, meaning Monday, Tuesday”.
UN rights office spokesman Rupert Colville has said that from March 2015 through September 30, 4,014 civilians had died and nearly 7,000 had been injured.
Casualties climbed steeply in August and September, following the collapse of a ceasefire, with the coalition held responsible for six times as many civilian deaths and injuries as the rebel forces, Colville said.
Yemen ranks as a level 3 emergency – the highest on the UN humanitarian scale – with nearly 70 percent of the population of 21 million facing food shortages.
When asked about an offensive on Islamic State group [IS] militants in the Iraqi city of Mosul, Jubeir said Islamic State would lose the war, but that he was worried that Shia militias entering the IS-held city could “engage in bloodbaths”.