Dubai: The Arab coalition supporting the internationally-recognised Yemeni government could intensify its battle against the Iranian-backed militias in Yemen ahead of the expected peace talks in mid-November to further boost their position when the two sides sit at the table, military analyst said.
The coalition, which has sent 30 military vehicles, including tanks, to forces loyal to President Abd Rabbo Mansour Hadi in Taiz, dispatched the military aid to quell the battle in the city ahead of the talks, they added.
Earlier, “hopes were pinned on the Yemeni opposition [pro-government forces] to squash the battle on Taiz, but with time, it became clear that the opposition alone can’t do the job, and there is a need for a direct intervention from the coalition forces,” said Riad Kahwaji, director of the Dubai-based Institute for Near East & Gulf Military Analysis (INEGMA).
After the arrival of the military aid, “we expect to witness change,” on the battles’ direction on the ground, he told Gulf News.
While Taiz has remained in the hands of forces loyal to President Hadi, it was under siege for several months by Al Houthis.
Meanwhile, press reports said the pro-government troops, supported by the Arab coalition forces, succeeded in regaining areas in Mareb region on Sunday.
Press reports said more reinforcements are expected to arrive in Taiz from Lahj province in the south.
UAE’s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Bin Mohammad Gargash stressed that UAE will continue to seriously work with its regional partners to preserve Yemen’s unity and safety.
“We have always wanted Yemen to be a politically, economically, and socially viable state,” Gargash said in his speech at the Second Abu Dhabi Strategic Debate on Sunday.
“For four decades, Yemen was one of the biggest recipients of UAE aid. We have always wanted Yemen to be a politically, economically, and socially viable state,” Gargash said.
“Despite this help, Yemen has traditionally been unstable and fractious, for reasons that go back centuries. What changed this year was that external Iranian influence had led Al Houthis to undermine the Yemeni government and degrade its institutions. Effectively they began to build a state within a state.”
“We could not allow this to happen in Yemen. We will not accept that Yemen — right in our back yard — should be home to a Hezbollah-style, Iranian-backed militia. Instead we have intervened to protect the region’s long-term stability,” minister said.
At the same time, Gargash said the UAE supports the efforts to reach a political solution in Yemen.
Earlier Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Al Jubeir was quoted as saying the war in Yemen is close to its end.
Commenting on the political statements, Kahwaji said, “Wars are a continuation to politics, but in a violent manner. Wars are dialogue but with mortars, rockets and warplanes. At the end, one party will yield to the other and make concessions, and accept the conditions of the other party.”
Already, Kahwaji added, Al Houthis have lost a considerable part of their power and the territory they had captured.
“They became besieged and isolated. They have become more ready to accept the coalition conditions”.