UNITED NATIONS: The UN Security Council on Saturday made a new call for an end to violence in Yemen, where dozens were killed after the return of President Ali Abdullah Saleh from three months abroad.
The 15 Security Council nations, which include the United States, China and Russia, issued a statement calling on all sides to “reject violence, including against peaceful and unarmed civilians, and show maximum restraint.”
“They called on all parties to move forward urgently in an inclusive, orderly and Yemeni-led process of political transition,” it said.
The council stressed the role of the Gulf Cooperation Council initiative, which sets out a transition to a new government.
“The members of the Security Council expressed their grave concern at the continued serious deterioration of the economic and humanitarian situation in Yemen. They were deeply concerned at the worsening security situation, including the threat from Al-Qaeda in parts of Yemen,” added the statement.
The council called for access to provide humanitarian assistance and called on all sides “not to target vital infrastructure.”
Saleh returned to Yemen on Friday, preaching peace, after a three-month absence in Saudi Arabia, where he was treated for wounds sustained in a June 3 bomb attack on his palace.
More than 40 people were killed Saturday in battles that hit several neighborhoods in Sanaa including Change Square, the epicenter of anti-regime demonstrations, an activist from the protest organizing committee said.
The president has faced months of demands that he leave office so a new government can be elected. Thousands have died in battles between government forces and demonstrators, and between different factions.