Dubai: Saudi Arabia called on the UN Security Council on Thursday to put an end to Iranian weapons smuggling to the Al Houthi militia in Yemen as the clandestine shipments continue despite a UN resolution forbidding it.
Saudi Arabia’s representative to the UN, Abdullah Al Mouallimi, added in a letter to Security Council president Gerard Van Bohemen that the smuggling of Iranian-made weapons to Yemeni militias fighting the internationally-recognised government of Abd Rabbo Mansour Hadi is not only a violation of the Security Council resolution but also threatens the stability of Saudi Arabia, Yemen and the region as a whole.
“We further urge the Security Council to take all necessary measures to demand that Iran complies with all relevant Security Council resolutions, cease and desist from any illegal actions in Yemen,” Al Mouallimi added in the letter, which was carried by several regional news agencies.
The seizure of weapons by maritime forces from Australia, France and the US, “uncovered huge shipments of illicit arms confirmed to have originated in Iran”, the letter added.
Saudi Arabia reaffirmed in the letter its right “to take all appropriate measure to counter the threats by the Al Houthi-Saleh rebel militias and will spare no effort in protecting the security and safety of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Yemen and its people, and the region”.
“The Yemeni case has to be given to the UN, because neither the authority in Sana’a, nor the authority outside Sana’a has been able to end the war,” former Yemeni finance minister, Saif Al Assali told Gulf News.
He was referring to the Al Houthi militia and their supporters from the forces loyal to ousted Yemeni president Ali Abdullah Saleh, who are controlling Sana’a, while the internationally-recognised government led by Hadi is controlling the southern part of Yemen.
“You can’t be part of the problem and the solution at the same time. There is a need for a third party to restore Yemen’s security, preserve Saudi security and the rest of the region, as well to stop Iran from interfering in the Yemeni affairs,” he said.
Al Assali also called on Kuwait to hold an international conference to raise money for Yemen on the lines of the conference it held to support Syria.
He said Yemen needs at least $5 billion (Dh18.4 billion) to avoid a famine. Yemen is considered one of the least-developed countries in the world.