The UN Security Council will vote today on a draft resolution which calls for those involved in Yemen’s Shia Houthi insurgency to be blacklisted, diplomatic sources said.
If adopted, the Jordan-drafted resolution would impose a global asset freeze and travel ban against Ahmed Saleh, son of former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh, and Abdul-Malik Al-Houthi, the group’s leader, according to a copy of the resolution seen by the Anadolu Agency.
It would also impose an arms embargo on the Houthi forces, who “attempted to unilaterally replace the legitimate government of Yemen with an illegitimate governing authority that the Houthis dominated.”
The position of Russia, a permanent member of the council that wields a veto, is considered key to today’s vote. Moscow wants to extend the proposed arms embargo to Yemen’s UN-backed government of Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi, according to media reports.
Yemen has been in turmoil since last September, when the Houthis overran the capital Sanaa and from where they have sought to extend their influence over the rest of the fractious country.
The draft resolution calls on the rebels to withdraw from territory they have seized.
Since 25 March, Saudi Arabia and its Arab allies have been pounding Houthi positions across Yemen in a bombardment that has killed more than 600 people, according to the UN.
Riyadh says the strikes are in response to appeals by Hadi to “save the [Yemeni] people from the Houthi militias.”
The Houthis have denounced the US-backed offensive as an unwarranted “Saudi-American onslaught” on Yemen.