Riyadh [Saudi Arabia]: Saudi Arabia on Saturday invited the Yemeni government and all parties involved in the conflict in Aden to hold emergency peace negotiations in a bid to strike a deal to end the four-year-old civil war in the neighbouring country.
“The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia invites the Yemeni government and all parties involved in the conflict in #Aden to hold an urgent meeting in #KSA, their second country, to discuss the differences, exercise prudence and dialogue, renounce division, stop strife and unite,” the Saudi Foreign Ministry tweeted.
The development came hours after the Security Belt Forces loyal to Yemen’s separatist Southern Transitional Council captured military camps, government buildings and the presidential palace in Aden, which has been the seat of the internationally recognised Yemeni government.
Saudi-led forces that back the Yemeni government had to retreat from the palace to the coalition’s military base of al Barika, west of Aden. Yemeni Deputy Foreign Minister Mohammed Hadrami has described the incident as a coup.
Riyadh noted that the kingdom was following the developments in Aden “with great concern”.
The spokesperson for the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen, Colonel Turki Maliki, in turn, called for an immediate ceasefire in Aden, starting at 1 pm (local time) on Sunday and threatened truce violators with military force, according to the SPA press agency.
Maliki also urged the Security Belt Forces to withdraw from the positions that they have seized during the past few days.
The violence in Aden erupted on Wednesday as security forces guarding the presidential palace in Aden engaged in clashes with the separatist forces.
The southern region of Yemen is seeking independence and the return of the status quo that existed before the unification of North and South Yemen into a single state in 1990.