September 19, 2021

“We are not advocates of revenge”: Yemeni president on Houthi rebels

Yemen's president said on Friday that his government and supporters were "not advocates of revenge" when it comes to ending the country's bloody civil war.

Abdrabuh Mansour Hadi Mansour told the UN General Assembly that with international support, a "new Yemen" could emerge that would include rebel Houthi fighters.

Matthew Wells reports.

Houthi rebels, which the Yemeni government say are backed by Iran, took over the capital Sana'a in late 2014.

In March last year, a Saudi-led coalition joined the government side and began a bombing campaign which has worsened the humanitarian crisis in Yemen, where 14 million now require aid.

Hospitals have been bombed and around 10,000 have been killed during the fighting, according to the UN.

The President, whose government is based in the southern city of Aden, told the General Assembly that the rebels and militias' "destructive scheme" stands "no chance of succeeding".

His supporters had not started the war, and his government was still open to unifying the country he added.

His words are spoken through an interpreter.

"We are not advocates of revenge. We do not seek to eliminate anyone from the Yemeni landscape. We extend our hand in order to build a new Yemen, despite the extensive damage caused by the coup d'etat enterprise, we continue to see them as a strayed Yemeni group, that must correct its course."

President Mansour said the Houthi takeover had left a security vacuum which had opened the door to increased terrorism.

Acknowledging Yemen's catastrophic predicament, he called on donor countries to fulfil their pledges to ensure humanitarian aid gets through to millions of civilians, who face death through conflict and starvation.

Matthew Wells, United Nations.

Duration: 1'23"

Source: United Nations Radio.