The Saudi-led coalition fighting the Houthi group is preparing for the next phase in the war in Yemen, the United Arab Emirates (UAE)'s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Anwar Gargash, announced yesterday.
"The Arab coalition is preparing for the next phase with its political and military tools and is determined to achieve its strategic objectives," Gargash said on Twitter, adding that the coalition was "repelling attempts to change the balance of power in the region."
The military coalition, he pointed out, was seeking to restore what he described as "Yemen's sustainable political stability."
"Both Saudi Arabia and the UAE are currently working with the United Nations on the modalities of the 2019 commitment to ensure maximum benefits for the Yemeni people," the UAE official noted.
Prominent Emirati politician, Abdulkhaleq Abdulla, recently said that the UAE's withdrawal from Yemen was aimed at "restoring legitimacy". "The UAE's decision will pave a way for reviving peace efforts and ending the war in Yemen," Abdulla told CNN.
Saudi Arabia and the UAE are part of an Arab coalition fighting in Yemen against the Iran-backed Houthis and forces loyal to ousted President Ali Abdullah Saleh. The coalition entered the war in 2015 to reinstate the UN-backed President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi. However the UAE has been found to be backing the Southern Transitional Council in an effort to split Yemen in to two countries, North and South, contrary to the objectives of the coalition.
According to UN officials, more than 70,000 people have been killed in the war, while more than 11 per cent of the country's population has been displaced.=