The signing of a breakthrough deal to bring peace to Yemen’s south is an extremely important and positive development as it refocuses the Yemeni governments’ energy into fighting Iran-backed Al Houthis.
Unrest in the south, which pitted the government led by Abd Rabbo Mansour Hadi against the Southern Transitional Council, had distracted the Saudi-led coalition from the battle against Al Houthis.
The STC was part of the coalition to fight Al Houthis, but for several months that fight had been put on hold because of the rift that emerged between the two sides.
The agreement was widely hailed as a stepping stone towards ending the wider conflict which will see the government return to Aden in exchange for the STC being incorporated into a new government with equal representation.
Praise for the deal stretched from Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman who touted the agreement as opening a “new period of stability in Yemen” to US President Donald Trump who tweeted: “A very good start”.
On his part, UN Special Envoy for Yemen, Martin Griffiths, said the deal would propel efforts to end the wider civil war that has devastated the country.
The agreement was widely hailed as a stepping stone towards ending the wider conflict which will see the government return to Aden in exchange for the STC being incorporated into a new government with equal representation
Not only will the deal help unite the coalition against the real enemy of Al Houthis, it also brings justice to the STC which hopes the agreement will elevate its status.
After all, the STC has played an important role in helping route out Al Qaida from the south and has been a loyal partner for several years in the fight against Al Houthis.
They deserve more representation in the government and more recognition for its valiant efforts on the battlefield.
The deal also demonstrates the ability of all parties to put aside differences and address problems through negotiations and talks.
This shows a great maturity on the part of all stakeholders, including Saudi Arabia and the UAE, to achieve progress through dialogue.
It took weeks of indirect talks but the deal was reached which sparred the south from unnecessary violence and heartache.
The deal also put to rest any false information of a rift between Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
His Highness Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, tweeted a picture of himself and Prince Mohammed walking hand in hand with Hadi after Tuesday’s ceremony.
This not only shows a united front in the war against Al Houthis but shows that eliminating the Al Houthi threat remains a top priority for the UAE, which has been an indispensable member of the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen.