By Zakaria al-Kamali
KUWAIT CITY (AA) – UN Envoy to Yemen Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed said that Yemen’s warring parties are closer to reaching an agreement.
“We are now working on abolishing the current obstacles and are discussing practical details to an executive mechanism that makes sessions more sensitive and brings us closer to reaching an agreement,” Ould Cheikh Ahmed said in a statement late Tuesday.
According to the UN envoy, two sessions were held with the government’s delegation on Tuesday. They included discussions on military and security developments.
The meetings focused on withdrawal mechanisms, connecting the political aspect with the security framework and setting an action plan for the next stage.
Ould Cheikh Ahmed’s statements contradict remarks he made a day earlier when he said a breakthrough would likely “take a long time”.
UN-brokered negotiations between the Yemeni government, led by President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi, and representatives of the Shia Houthi group and their allies kicked off in Kuwait City on April 11.
Yemen has been racked by chaos since late 2014, when the Houthis – along with forces loyal to former President Ali Abdullah Saleh – overran capital Sanaa and several other parts of the country.
According to UN figures, the ongoing conflict has led to the death of more than 6,400 Yemenis to date and forced some 2.5 million to flee their homes.