US to open direct talks with Houthi rebels: WSJ

US to open direct talks with Houthi rebels: WSJ
US President Donald Trump speaks to the media.- AFP

Washington - The United States is looking to prod Saudi Arabia into taking part in secret talks in Oman with Houthi leaders .



By AFP

Published: Wed 28 Aug 2019, 10:00 PM

Last updated: Thu 29 Aug 2019, 12:57 AM

The US is preparing to open direct talks with Iran-aligned Houthis in a bid to end Yemen's war which has claimed thousands of lives, the Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday.
The proposed initiative, the first direct negotiations between Washington and the Houthis in over four years, comes as the rebels have stepped up missile and drone attacks on Saudi Arabia.
"The United States is looking to prod Saudi Arabia into taking part in secret talks in Oman with Houthi leaders in an effort to broker a ceasefire in Yemen," The Wall Street Journal reported, citing unnamed people familiar with the plans.
The move could open the first significant channel between President Donald Trump's administration and the Houthis at a time when fears of a broader regional war are growing, the  newspaper said.
The US negotiating team would be led by Christopher Henzel, a veteran diplomat who became the Trump administration's first ambassador to Yemen in April, the newspaper said.


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