Houthis propose border truce with Saudi Arabia, Saleh demands direct talks

A senior Houthi leader proposed on Sunday to stop attacks along Yemen’s border with Saudi Arabia in exchange for halting the kingdom’s airstrikes, reported Anadolu Agency.

“we will] stop combat operations along border,” Ali al-Sammad said in a speech cited by the Saba news agency.

Meanwhile, Yemen’s ousted President Ali Abdullah Saleh denied on Sunday any alliance between himself and Iran, claiming Saudi used this as an excuse to intervene in the country.

According to Middle East Monitor, Saleh spoke on his channel Yemen Today to mark the 54th anniversary of the 26 September revolution, called for direct dialogue between himself and Saudi Arabia in order to achieve a new deal .

He added that, prior to the outbreak of the unrest in the country, he had rejected a Saudi offer to form an alliance with the Muslim Brotherhood affiliated Islah party and the Hadi government.

On the other hand, United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon asked Iran to encourage Houthis to negotiate rationally at the time when the ministerial quartet on Yemen met in New York and approved Kerry’s 72-hour truce.

The secretary-general said that the Houthis needed to come to the table in a spirit of pragmatism and compromise, outlined Alsharq Alawsat

Also a statement issued by the U.N. spokesman following the meeting between Ban Ki-moon and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said: “The secretary-general stressed the need to find a political solution to the conflicts in Syria and Yemen, and sought Iran’s support in facilitating the resumption of peace talks for both countries.”

In fact, Ali Abdullah Saleh is actively supported by Houthi rebels who have prompted Saudi Arabia and its Arab allies to launch a massive air campaign in an effort to reinstate Hadi’s government.

Houthi rebels overran capital Sanaa in late 2014, forcing President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi and his Saudi-backed government to flee to Riyadh.

In response, the Houthis have carried out missile attacks on Saudi targets across the border between the two countries.