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Hopes for peace in Yemen as government, separatists agree to halt fighting

Hopes for peace in Yemen as government, separatists agree to halt fighting

Yemen's internationally recognised government and UAE-backed separatists have signed a power-sharing deal to halt infighting.

The top United Nations official in Yemen has welcomed an agreement to end infighting between the Government and separatist allies in the south of the country, known as the Southern Transitional Council, signed on Tuesday in Saudi Arabia.

We believe it is a crucial and important step forward towards a political solution and durable peace & security in Yemen.

Pakistan on Wednesday welcomed Riyadh Agreement for restoration of enduring peace and stability in Yemen, ARY News reported. The so-called "covenant of Riyadh" was announced by the crown prince arabia, Mohamed bin Salman, in a message televised.

The offer came after the Houthis claimed responsibility for attacks on Sept 14 against two key Saudi oil installations that temporarily knocked out half of the Opec giant's production.

The statement underscored the importance of cooperation between Yemeni forces and their prioritization of the higher national interest to confront threats against their country, namely from the Iran-backed Houthi militias.

The deal has additionally been hailed by United Nations envoy Martin Griffiths as an essential step towards bringing an finish to a struggle that has pushed thousands and thousands of Yemenis to the brink of starvation. "Listening to southern stakeholders is important to the political efforts to achieve peace in the country".

At that point, southern Yemen was the "only Marxist country in the entire Arabian peninsula", Adam Baron, a visiting fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations and International Security Programme fellow at the journal New America, told RFI.

The UAE-backed separatist Southern Transition Council (STC) is nominally allied to Hadi's Saudi-backed government, but the two sides fell out in August, with the separatists seizing control of Aden.

There was no immediate comment from the Houthi rebels, who seized Yemen's capital Sanaa and much of the country's north in 2014, sparking a Saudi-led military intervention the following March.

Saudi Arabia has in the past weeks increased its military presence in southern Yemen, airlifting in additional troops, armored vehicles, tanks and other military equipment.

He took control of Aden earlier this month after the United Arab Emirates withdrew some of its forces from the city.

The conflict has since killed tens of thousands of people - majority civilians - and driven millions more to the brink of starvation in what the United Nations calls the world's worst humanitarian crisis.