After a visit to Riyadh, he did not meet with the government. Griffiths says he met a Houthi leader in Muscat

After a visit to Riyadh, he did not meet with the government. Griffiths says he met a Houthi leader in Muscat

The UN special envoy to Yemen, Martin Griffiths, said he met with the Houthis' spokesman and head of its negotiating delegation, Mohammed Abdul Salam, on Monday in the Omani capital Muscat.

"I had a very good meeting with Mohamed Abdeslam in Muscat on September 9, 2019," Griffiths said in a tweet on the official twitter account of the envoy's office.

He said he had exchanged views with the Houthi leader on "ways to make progress in the political process and reduce tensions in Yemen."

The Houthis did not mention the meeting, by their media outlets, nor did Mohammed Abdeslam spread the news of the meeting on his Twitter account, and the group only posted Griffith's tweet on Tuesday in its media, without giving any further details.

Griffiths' meeting with the Houthi leader comes a day after a similar meeting with Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel al-Jubair.

Al-Jubair received Martin Griffiths, who arrived in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, on Sunday, and discussed "developments on the Yemeni scene, the efforts on it and ways to strengthen humanitarian assistance for the relief of the Yemeni people," According to Saudi News agency (SPA).

Griffiths described the meeting as "very positive", expressing gratitude to Saudi Arabia for its mediation efforts in southern Yemen, noting in a tweet on his office that he had discussed with the Saudi official "ways to move forward with the political process in Yemen."

Unusually, Griffiths did not meet with President Hadi or any Yemeni government official during his visit to Riyadh, before he recently announced his meeting with Houthi leaders in Muscat.

Griffiths' moves, coinciding with the announcement of the Joint Redeployment Committee and the coordination of the monitoring of the Ceasefire in Hodeidah, the approval of the parties to the conflict during their meeting on Sunday and Monday, reached the formation of a joint operations center and the deployment of four monitoring teams in the lines of contact.

The UN moves also come amid reports of direct negotiations, the U.S. administration announced its intention to carry out with the Houthi militias, away from the legitimate government, with the possible presence of representatives of Saudi Arabia, as the negotiations are mainly aimed at Sparing U.S. interests in the region attacks by the Houthis, or any possible escalation at the behest of Iran, which the United States imposes harsh economic measures and sanctions on it.


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