Leader of Yemen’s Revolution tells Le Figaro: Those who demand Yemenis to withdraw from Hodeidah as if asking French to withdraw from Paris
SANAA, July 18 (Saba) – Leader of Yemen’s Revolution Abdulmalik Badreddin al-Houthi said he supports the United Nations’ supervisory role in Hodeidah if the Saudi-led coalition ends its aggression against the Red Sea port city, a French newspaper quoted the leader as saying in an exclusive interview.
The following is the full text of the interview:
Q: France did not invite you to the International Humanitarian Conference held on June 27 in Paris..what is your response?
It is clear that many western countries deal with the problems and wars of the region from the perspective of economic interests and material gains even at the expense of human rights and violation of the international laws and this is happening towards the war led by the Saudi-led aggression coalition on our country Yemen, in which the Saudi regime uses internationally prohibited weapons as it has been confirmed many times by international humanitarian organizations.
The Saudi regime and its coalition forces have been Killing Yemeni civilians, targeting civil and service facilities and committing genocide. Local media have published pictures documenting the killing of thousands of civilians.
The UN and other international and local organizations have also documented many crimes committed by the Saudi regime in its military aggression on Yemen. However, the focus of some European countries were not at these war crimes, but to exploit the war through selling arms deals as well as to conduct deals to carry out military services in return for money. Some European countries even sell political positions and adopt wrong stances towards the Yemeni people in favor of the Saudi and UAE regimes.
Our assessment is that the French official stance comes after the British negative stance towards the Yemeni people because of their supporting and contributions to the military aggression on Yemen.. although there are some other European countries have adopted more moderate positions towards Yemen’s case.
France, which has a very bad experience with events that targeted its national security by Daeesh and al-Qaida, is committing a mistake in its support top Saudi Arabia and Emirates because Saudi and Emirati regimes are backing Daeesh and al-Qaida in Yemen in their fighting alongside other factions loyal to Hadi’s group, southern separatist group and Islah party.
Through its role in backing the military aggression on Yemen, France also denies the principles, human values and the UN Charters and it harms its relations with the Yemeni people and negatively affect its future interests with the Yemeni people.
The Yemeni people are very dear and peaceful people, and they want their right of freedom and independence and want positive relationships with other countries, except Israel, which is an occupying entity.
Q: Why did you refuse to meet the French envoy who is ready to visit you in Sana’a?
We did not refuse to meet him, but asked for an explanation in advance about the role of France in the aggression against Yemen after your newspaper published a story about French military participation. We have learned that the aggression coalition is the one who objected to his coming.
Q: Can France play a mediating role to stop the war in Yemen?
Who wants to play the role of mediator, it is important first to be balanced and neutral and keen to achieve peace.
Q: Your enemies claim that the battle of Hodeidah will stop if you withdraw from the city. Are you ready to withdraw from Hodeidah to avoid further casualties, especially among civilians? Otherwise, what are the conditions for your acceptance of this?
It is funny to ask Yemenis to withdraw from Hodeidah to be handed over to the UAE, and this demand is contrary to international conventions and norms. What if Britain asked the French to withdraw from Paris or another French city and hand it over to the British, is this logical request?
Q: Are you willing to accept the UN plan to take over the administration of the port of Hodeidah or deposit its revenues in the Central Bank?
Since days of Ismail Ould Cheikh as a UN envoy, we are not rejecting the role of supervision and logistics of the United Nations in the port, but on the condition that the aggression against Hodeidah stops.
We do not reject the collection of ports revenues, including the port of Hodeidah and the revenues of oil and gas in Marib, Shabwa and Hadramout, and be allocated for salaries under the UN supervision, providing that salaries of free areas that are not occupied by Saudi Arabia and the UAE be paid from Sanaa.
Q: What is your answer to accusations of Saudi Arabia, the UAE and the United Nations to Houthis of receiving Iranian weapons and equipment through the port of Hodeidah?
Both the Saudi and the American regimes know that they are lying. Because no ships enter to the port without a license and permission from the aggression coalition and a license from the United Nations within a strict mechanism just as it happens towards the Gaza Strip.
The naval warplanes of the coalition are heavily deployed along the coast and closely monitor all incoming ships and nothing enters except according to their mechanism, manner, license and permission.
However, we have dealt with the initiatives and efforts of the previous and current UN Envoy and agreed to the United Nations control on the port directly with the condition that the aggression against Hodeidah be stopped for humanitarian reasons. But it became clear that the UAE seeks to control the ports in Yemen under the American supervision and protection for colonial objectives, economic ambitions and other things.
Q: What are the conditions and proposals for a cease-fire and agreement to return to the negotiating table proposed by the United Nations envoy Martin Griffith?
The initiative the UN envoy Martin Griffith presented and discussed it with us was relating to the port in terms of the transfer of direct control to him, and regarding the revenues issue we interacted positively with it as we mentioned earlier.
He also conveyed to us the demands of the UAE, which his deputy interacts with, and we told him that we are interested in his initiative, not the UAE demands and its ambitions.
Q: Are you willing to give up ballistic missiles in exchange for stopping the bombing of coalition forces in Yemen and to establish a transitional government according to Griffith’s proposal?
We are ready to stop rocket attacks on Saudi Arabia and the UAE if they stopped the bombing on our country because we are basically in self-defense position.
As for the issue of weapons, all parties have weapons and what owned by the loyalists of Saudi Arabia and the UAE is more and more recent than those with Sanaa.
And when the aggression stops, a political solution is achieved and a partnership government is formed, then it will be the responsibility of the government to deal with the issue, in a situation where it is certain that the aggression against the Yemeni people will be stopped.
Q: Under what conditions can you agree to withdraw from Sanaa and hand over control to a Yemeni future government you taking part in? And what are your requests to be part of it?
The talk about the withdrawal of the people of Yemen from Sanaa in favor of the Saudi and UAE regimes is as a request for the withdrawal of French nationals from Paris for the UAE. Isn’t that seems strange and illogical!?
As for the formation of a Yemeni government within a political solution based on partnership, this was possible from the beginning according to the testimony of the former UN envoy Jamal Benomar.
The war on Yemen is not for that purpose, but its real objective is to control Yemen’s land and people.