Iran’s destabilising influence in the Middle East needs to be overcome to end the conflict in Yemen, US Defence Secretary Jim Mattis said today.
At least 10,000 people have been killed and more than three million displaced in the war in Yemen, which is now in its third year. Millions of people are also struggling to feed themselves.
We will have to overcome Iran’s efforts to destabilise yet another country and create another militia in their image of Lebanese Hezbollah, but the bottom line is we are on the right path for it
Mattis told reporters in Riyadh after meeting senior Saudi officials.The US official said the goal was for there to be a political solution through UN-brokered negotiations to resolve the conflict in Yemen.
Officials have said the United States is considering deepening its role in the conflict in Yemen by more directly assisting its Gulf allies who are fighting Iranian-supported Houthi rebels there.
US officials speaking on condition of anonymity said the situation in Yemen came up in their meetings with Saudi officials, including with King Salman and Deputy Crown Prince and Minister of Defence Mohammed Bin Salman.
Officials said US support for the Saudi-led coalition was discussed including what more assistance the United States could provide, including potential intelligence support, saying they were weighing boosting the same type of support already being given.