Egypt has reiterated its backing of the government of Yemeni President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi who is fighting the Houthis, a rebel group that controls much of the country’s north.
The remarks came as Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi met late on Sunday with the Yemeni leader in New York, on the sidelines of the 71st United Nations general Assembly session.
Egypt stressed that it “stands by Yemen and continues to support the legitimate government of President Hadi and is backing efforts to ensure the country’s stability,” El-Sisi’s spokesman Alaa Youssef said in a statement.
The fighting in Yemen pits the Houthis and supporters of former President Ali Abdullah Saleh against President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who is backed by a Saudi-led coalition of Arab states.
During Sunday’s talks, El-Sisi highlighted the need to press on with UN-sponsored negotiations towards reaching a political solution to the crisis in Yemen, where an 18-month civil war has killed thousands of people, including civilians.
The United Nations said last month that at least 10,000 people have been killed in the past 18 months. It said the war has displaced three million Yemenis and forced 200,000 to seek refuge abroad. Some 14 million of Yemen’s 26 million population need food aid, it added.
Since March 2015, the Saudi-led coalition has waged an air campaign aiming at regaining cities under their control of Houthis.
Earlier this month, a Yemeni minister said that Egypt is hosting an international conference in March to raise humanitarian aid for Yemen.
However, Egypt — part of the Saudi-led coalition and supporter of the Saudi-backed government — is yet to officially announce the conference.