Riyadh re­futes Tehran claim on me­di­a­tion re­quest with Houthis

For­eign Min­istry con­firms that these claims are base­less and un­founded

Arab News - - SAUDI ARABIA - ARAB NEWS

The di­rec­tor of me­dia af­fairs at the Min­istry of For­eign Af­fairs, Osama Ahmed Nu­gali, re­futed the state­ment of Hos­sein Amir Ab­dol­lahian, se­nior ad­viser to the Ira­nian Par­lia­ment speaker, car­ried by Ira­nian News Agency (IRNA), that Saudi Ara­bia re­quested Ira­nian me­di­a­tion with Houthis in Ye­men.

He fur­ther con­firmed that these claims are base­less and un­founded.

On the other hand, State Min­is­ter for For­eign Af­fairs of the UAE An­war Qar­qash said Houthi state­ments threat­en­ing the UAE and its cap­i­tal is sub­stan­tial ev­i­dence of the ne­ces­sity for the De­ci­sive Storm op­er­a­tion and that Iran’s mili­tias (Houthi) have de­spi­ca­ble ob­jec­tives and their dan­ger is real.

On his Twit­ter ac­count, he said the de­ci­sive king launched the “storm” due to his knowl­edge of the dan­ger of chang­ing the strate­gic bal­ance, and Houthi threats have proved that. Arab coali­tion forces are fight­ing the nec­es­sary bat­tle for the fu­ture of the re­gion, he said.

“Houthi threats and their fol­lies do not frighten us and ex­pose the des­per­a­tion of those who are de­fend­ing faded il­lu­sions, but they re­veal their ill-in­ten­tions on the se­cu­rity and sta­bil­ity of the Gulf,” he said.

Qar­qash’s re­marks come fol­low­ing re­cent threats made by Houthi leader Ab­dul­ma­lik Al-Houthi where he threat­ened to at­tack neigh­bor­ing coun­tries and oil tanks off the Ye­meni coasts with mis­siles in case the le­git­i­mate govern­ment and Arab coali­tion forces ad­vance to the Ye­meni port of Al-Hodeida.

Mean­while, Reuters quoted a lo­cal of­fi­cial as say­ing that three per­sons sus­pected of be­long­ing to Al-Qaeda ter­ror group were killed in an at­tack launched by drones in south­ern parts of Ye­men late Thurs­day. The at­tack tar­geted the Modiya re­gion, in Abyan prov­ince, and the sus­pected mem­bers were killed while rid­ing a mo­tor­cy­cles. The US has re­peat­edly at­tacked Al-Qaeda el­e­ments with he­li­copters and drones in a cam­paign to elim­i­nate the ter­ror group’s abil­ity to launch at­tacks.

In a re­lated devel­op­ment, an of­fi­cer of the de­mo­bi­lized Repub­li­can Guard loyal to de­posed Pres­i­dent Saleh said Houthi mili­tia were train­ing women to use weapons and in other war skills. Fe­male train­ers from Iran, Iraq, Le­banon and Syria, who were brought in by the Houthi mili­tia in 2014, are car­ry­ing out the train­ing.

A re­port car­ried by Al-Asima.on­line af­firmed the ex­is­tence of Ira­nian fe­male train­ers and ex­ploita­tion of women pris­on­ers and girls by the Houthi mili­tia in this re­gard.

The web­site quoted an of­fi­cer, who asked for anonymity, as say­ing that nearly 500 Ye­meni girls were con­scripted in Sanaa and are in the hands of Ira­nian and Iraqi fe­male train­ers. Zu­mar prov­ince, in south­ern Sanaa, is re­ported to have the largest train­ing camp for women.

Girls and school stu­dents are taken for train­ing ei­ther forcibly, threat­ing their

JED­DAH: Saudi Ara­bia has re­futed Ira­nian state­ments that the King­dom has re­quested Ira­nian me­di­a­tion with Al-Houthis in Ye­men, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) said.

fa­thers with killing, or brib­ing their fam­i­lies with money, ex­ploit­ing their dif­fi­cult liv­ing con­di­tions, he said.

He said Houthi con­scrip­tion train­ing cour­ses do not come di­rectly but start with so-called “cul­tural cour­ses” which are purely re­li­gious cour­ses be­fore enrollment in the real con­scrip­tion cour­ses.

Houthis raise their weapons in the air dur­ing a demon­stra­tion. (Reuters)

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