KT Edit: UAE's pragmatic call for peace must be heard

The security and safety of the population is the highest priority. It is not going to be easy and the realist element in the UAE's approach takes the difficulty of the task at hand into account.



Even as Syria's woes continue and the death toll over the past eight years rises past 465,000 there are more than a million injured and maimed and the ongoing conflict has forced about 12 million people - that is half the country - into refugee status as the turmoil spreads in the region. Against this canvas the UAE's call for immediate talks to end the strife in Yemen is salutary and should be instantly heeded by all those who wish to sue for peace. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE's Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, makes a strong argument for the return of peace and a united front against the Houthi militia and other aligned terrorist groups. In recent times the UAE's voice on the international stage is one of sound reason and aimed always at creating and encouraging dialogue instead of picking up the gun. The respect it has gained in the comity of nations for its sensible and balanced advisories and its willingness to play intermediary when asked has had impact globally. The world listens to this calming influence.
The UAE has been quoted as following a foreign policy which is robust and instrumental in not just seeing peace as a means to an end but the end result in itself. Whether it is the issue of Palestine, the conflict in Syria, the current tanker war or even the Indo-Pakistan equation, the UAE believes firmly that no one should ever be afraid to negotiate and sit at the table. This priority is reflected in the fact that while the world celebrates a day (November 16) for tolerance, the UAE is the country that has dedicated a whole year to this pursuit. And what makes its stance with the olive branch so definitive is that it backs its overtures with action and aid and tangible support giving its words heft and depth. No wonder the world listens.
And it should listen now with like-minded nations in the region coming together as a singular entity to spike the guns in Yemen and de-escalate the situation. The security and safety of the population is the highest priority. It is not going to be easy and the realist element in the UAE's approach takes the difficulty of the task at hand into account. But if everyone gets on the same page and creates a consolidated front to help the legal government in Yemen it will send out a message of intent and be a major step towards stopping the Houthi movement and bringing in a much needed stability in the country.


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