Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Western, Asian States Respond to Yemen’s Rebels: Mecca is a Red Line | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Anti-Houthi protesters shout slogans to commemorate the fourth anniversary of the uprising that toppled former president Ali Abdullah Saleh, in Yemen’s southwestern city of Taiz February 11, 2015. Mohamed al-Sayaghi/Reuters

Riyadh, Aden – Islamic, Arab and Western reactions emerged on Saturday as a response to the ballistic missile launched last Thursday by Yemeni rebels against the Holy Mecca and which the Saudi Air Defense intercepted.

The ambassadors of seven countries to Riyadh condemned the attack in telephone calls conducted by Asharq Al-Awsat, saying Holly Mecca was a red line for all Muslims. The ambassadors of Germany, Singapore, Ireland, Turkey, Peru, Greece and Afghanistan asserted their objection to any attack against Islamic targets, and stated that the international community should not allow such crimes to pass without punishment.

Meanwhile, the efforts of U.N. envoy to Yemen Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed to reach a solution to the Yemeni crisis returned to “square 1,” after he presented a new plan that substantially and comprehensively contradicts the three references, according to Yemen Government’s Spokesman, Rajeh Badi.

Badi told Asharq Al-Awsat that the three references, including the Gulf initiative and its executive mechanisms, Security Council resolution 2216 and the outputs of the national dialogue should be the foundation of any negotiations based on an agreement reached since Geneva 1.

Commenting on the options of the next government, Badi said: “The government is keen on implementing peace and protecting the political track that would prevent a war. When we see a vision chiming with the spirit of the three references, then the Yemeni government would be ready to start any political track.”

Also, Yemeni presidential advisor Yassin Makawi told Asharq Al-Awsat that the roadmap presented by Ould Cheikh “constitutes a dangerous initiative to legitimize rebel militias around the world… this constitutes a true threat to peace worldwide.”

On Saturday, Yemeni President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi refused to take the proposal handed to him by the U.N. envoy during a meeting held in Riyadh.

Meanwhile, the British government reasserted it supports all efforts exerted to achieve the mission of Ould Cheikh and to reach a compromise to solve the Yemeni crisis.