HAFR AL-BATIN, Saudi Arabia (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry raised the possibility on Saturday of getting a ceasefire in Yemen similar to the arrangement that has been implemented in Syria, the State Department said.
Speaking in Hafr al-Batin in Saudi Arabia, at a meeting with Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir whose country leads an Arab coalition trying to dislodge Iran-allied Houthis from areas in Yemen captured last year, Kerry said that both sides have agreed to work together in the coming days “to explore the possibilities of a political solution.”
“We both agree that it would be desirable to see if we can find a similar approach, as we did in Syria, to try to get a ceasefire,” Kerry said, referring to the truce that has largely been holding for nearly two weeks in Syria.
“So we’re going to continue to work on that quietly and we have a team of people who are going to continue to be working together to that effect,” he added.
Jubeir said Saudi Arabia believed a political settlement that would ensure the Houthis abided by common understandings reached before the Houthi capture of Sanaa would pave the way to a solution.
“We reiterated to the secretary of state our commitment as expressed by the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) heads of state to embark on a long-term reconstruction and development plan for Yemen once the hostilities have ended,” Jubeir said.
“We are determined to protect legitimacy in Yemen, and we’re also committed to a political process in Yemen.
Reporting by Sami Aboudi; Editing by Greg Mahlich