Pro-Saudi President Backs Out of Yemen Peace Talks

Demands Houthis Unconditionally Surrender First

Yemen’s ‘president-in-exile,” Major General Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi, announced today that the much hyped UN peace talks for Yemen, scheduled for later this week, won’t include any representatives from his pro-Saudi forces, which effectively means the talks won’t happen at all.

Hadi insisted neither he nor anyone else would agree to take part in the talks unless the Shi’ite Houthis, which control the northern three quarters of the country, first agree to the UN’s April resolution, which demanded the Houthis surrender all their territory to Hadi and recognize him unconditionally as ruler of the country.

The resolution, pushed through by the US back in April as a show of support for the unelected Hadi, who resigned in January, is constantly cited by Saudi forces, who demand that the Houthi “rebels” agree to those terms before any talks take place.

This, needless to say, is a non-starter, since the Houthis have sought talks on a transition to democratic elections and more equal treatment for their northern provinces, and would have no leverage if they unilaterally surrendered mid-war.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.