GENEVA, Switzerland- UN's Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for Yemen, Martin Griffiths, on Wednesday, announced here, that, warring parities in Yemen are scheduled to participate in a new round of peace talks in Geneva, to end the four-year conflict engulfing the country.

Speaking at a press conference here, the UN envoy said, the new talks will begin on Thursday (today), and at this stage, the parties will mainly discuss the framework for negotiations and relevant confidence-building measures, so as to move the process forward.

Saying that he had met people from every segment of Yemeni society over seven months, the UN envoy said, "We have all agreed, the time has come to begin a new process which will lead to a resolution of this conflict, which has tragically marked the lives of so many Yemenis and continues to do so. We are talking about consultations. This is not a formal negotiation," he said, noting that, details still need to be hammered out for measures to resolve the conflict for which "there is no military solution."

The UN envoy said, he is hoping that both parties will meet in the same room, but they do not have to, as he tries to "build confidence" in both parties, in the three days initially set aside for the talks. "We have an opportunity to make progress towards a solution in Yemen," the UN official said, at the beginning of Wednesday's press conference. "This is an opportunity for that page to be turned, we want to understand the issues of both parties," he added.

The last UN-backed peace negotiations for Yemen was held in 2016 in Kuwait, which continued for several months in the Gulf country, but no constructive results had been reached due to serious differences between the rival parties. As for the duration of the new talks, Griffiths said, he did not want to define a "timetable" for the consultation.

"If it is going at a cracking pace we will keep going," he noted, adding, he hoped to start informal consultations with members of the Yemeni government side, led by the country's Foreign Minister, Khaled Yamani.

Saying that UN and others are working to ensure the timely arrival of the Houthi delegation, Griffiths told reporters that, the Houthis want to attend, and he will make sure they will.

According to a latest statement by the World Food Programme, intensified conflict is making the humanitarian situation in the country worse and worse, particularly in Hodeidah, the key port, which is a lifeline for millions in north western Yemen.


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