Deputy FM in Jeddah for Yemen Meeting

Deputy FM in Jeddah  for Yemen Meeting  Deputy FM in Jeddah  for Yemen Meeting

Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs Hossein Amir Abdollahian traveled to Saudi Arabia on Monday to take part in an emergency meeting of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation on the Yemen crisis at the OIC headquarters in Jeddah set to start today, IRNA reported.

Meanwhile, Yemen's opposing sides were expected to start UN-sponsored consultations in Geneva on Monday, aiming to end the bloody conflict in the Arab country. Representatives from the government of Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who has fled to Saudi Arabia, the Houthi movement, former president Ali Abdullah Saleh's General Peoples' Congress and other opposition groups were to take part in the talks.

Prior to his departure, Amir Abdollahian had met with Chairman of the Assembly of Experts Ayatollah Mohammad Yazdi on Sunday to brief him on the latest developments in the Middle East, especially in Yemen, Syria and Iraq.  

In the meeting, the senior diplomat highlighted the position of the Islamic Republic in the region, saying, "The enemies stop short of provoking insecurity in the country as they are afraid of Iran's power," Fars news agency reported.  

He pointed to the hegemonic powers' support for the so-called Islamic State militant group, saying the US is seeking to pursue its objectives in the region by using the experience it has gained in its occupation of Iraq (2003-2011) and Afghanistan (2001-present).

He also referred to the guidelines of Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei to Iranian authorities underlining the need to back the Syrian government and said adherence to the instructions helped foil hostile plots against the Muslim country.

Turning to Yemen, Amir Abdollahian denounced the Saudi military campaign against the impoverished country and said the Houthis are currently in control of the 19 of the 20 Yemeni provinces, protecting them from terrorists' advances.  

Condemning Saudi Arabia for attacking Yemen, the chairman of the clerical body called for an immediate ceasefire and the lifting of the blockade on the "oppressed" nation. He also urged the establishment of a national unity government based on agreement between Yemeni groups.  

A Saudi-led military alliance has been carrying out air raids in Yemen for almost three months to try to restore fugitive president Hadi and repel the Houthis. The conflict has reportedly killed over 2,300 people so far.

Pointing to the threat posed by Takfiris to the region, Ayatollah Yazdi called for demonstrating acumen to confront terrorist movements in the region.

A Takfiri is a Muslim who accuses followers of other faiths and some Islamic sects of being unbelievers.  

The senior cleric added that the campaign against Takfiri terrorists in Syria and Iraq should continue strongly by Iraqi and Syrian armed forces as well as the two countries' people.