Warring Yemeni parties urged to resume prisoner exchange


Sanaa, July 6 (IANS) Visiting President of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), Peter Maurer has urged the warring Yemeni parties to resume negotiations on the exchange of prisoners.

“My visit aimed to encourage the parties to resume the negotiations and to accelerate any solution for this humanitarian file,” he told reporters in a press conference here on Monday.

Maurer also called on all parties to reach a common ground to solve this issue in accordance with the international law related to detainees.

On Sunday, he discussed with the Houthi officials the possibilities of finding a solution to many humanitarian issues.

The ICRC president last week met Yemeni Prime Minister Maeen Abdul Malik in the southern port city of Aden, considered as the country’s temporary capital.

In October 2020, the ICRC had facilitated the exchange of more than 1,000 prisoners between the government and the Houthi group, the largest such operation since the eruption of the war.

Yemen has been mired in a civil war since late 2014 when the Houthi militia seized control of several northern provinces and forced the internationally recognised government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi out of the capital Sanaa.

Since the war intensified in 2015, the country has become the largest humanitarian crisis in the world, with 24.1 million people, or 80 per cent of the population, in need of humanitarian assistance, including more than 11 million children.

More than 14 million people are in acute need and more than three million people have been displaced from their homes.

Due to the prolonged war, Yemen has lost $90 billion in economic output and more than 600,000 people have lost their jobs.

Fifty-eight per cent of the population is living in extreme poverty.


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