U.S. Attempts at a Cease-Fire Marks Third Attempt at Peace Talks
(New York, N.Y.) - The ongoing war in Yemen between the internationally recognized Yemeni government and the Iran-backed Houthis continues into its fifth year.
The Houthis began taking control of parts of the country in mid-2014. In 2015, the threat to the Yemeni government prompted the intervention of a Saudi-led coalition of Arab states, including five Gulf Arab states, Morocco, Egypt, Jordan, and Sudan. The ongoing conflict has reportedly resulted in the deaths of more than 10,000 Yemeni civilians and over 90,000 casualties. More than 3 million others have been displaced since 2014, according to the United Nations.
Yemeni officials have long accused Iran’s Shiite Islamist regime of providing political, financial, and logistical support to the Houthi rebels and other secessionist movements in Yemen. Despite a 2009 U.N. report confirming such claims, Iran and the Houthis have historically denied engaging in past cooperation. Only in 2015 did Iran finally acknowledge providing “direct support” to the Houthis rebels. According one Houthi official, the group has received tens of millions of dollars from the Iranian regime in recent years. Experts place the amount of financial support from Iran at between $10 and $20 million per year, including at least one alleged payment of $3.7 million.
Last week, it was confirmed that the U.S. government is preparing to initiate negotiations with Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in an effort to bring the civil war to an end. This round of peace negotiations is aimed at convincing Saudi Arabia to take part in secret talks with the rebels in Oman to help broker a cease-fire in the conflict. The Houthis have previously engaged twice peace talks but they did not result in any significant progress.
To read the CEP report, Yemen: Extremism & Counter-Extremism, please click here.
To read the CEP report, Houthis, please click here.