“We were expecting that America and Saudi Arabia would announce a ceasefire and remove the [ongoing] siege, instead of introducing an initiative. They should have demonstrated their seriousness for the establishment of peace by allowing licensed ships to dock at the port of Hudaydah rather than put forth a proposal,” Mohammed Ali al-Houthi wrote in a post on his Twitter page on Monday evening, urging the Saudi-led military coalition fighting Yemen and the United States to accept the terms of an initiative devised by Yemen’s National Salvation Government aimed at restoring comprehensive peace across the country.
On Monday, Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud proposed a so-called “peace plan” to end the conflict in Yemen, which included reopening Sana’a airport and enabling fuel and food imports via Hudaydah port, both of which are controlled by the Ansarullah movement.
The top Saudi diplomat said at a news conference, that Political talks between representatives of Yemen’s former president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi’s Saudi-backed government and Ansarullah will also resume.
Al Saud said the initiative would take effect once the Yemeni sides agreed to it.
Mohammed Abdul-Salam, the spokesman for Ansarullah, said the initiative provided “nothing new,” as it still fell short of the movement’s demand for a complete lifting of the blockade on Sana’a airport and Hudaydah port.
“We expected Saudi Arabia to announce an end to the blockade of ports and airports and an initiative to allow in 14 ships that are held by the coalition,” he said.
A “humanitarian right” should not be used as a pressure tool, Abdul-Salam said.
Ansarullah would continue to talk with the Saudis, the United States and mediator Oman for a peace agreement, he said.
Meanwhile, Mohammed al-Bukhaiti, another member of Yemen’s Supreme Political Council, said Yemeni armed forces and fighters from their allied Popular Committees will continue to launch retaliatory strikes deep inside Saudi Arabia until peace is achieved in Yemen.
“Peace in Yemen cannot be obtained by unilateral cessation of hostilities. The refusal of the coalition of aggression and its mercenaries to stop fighting simultaneously with the other side proves that the aggressors are not serious about peace,” he tweeted.
“Yemeni force have, therefore, no option but to hit targets in the depths of Saudi Arabia, and to liberate every inch of the country’s soil through armed struggle,” Bukhaiti said.
Despite the so-called peace proposal, the Saudi warplanes continued to carry out a number of airstrikes against civilian structures across Yemen early on Tuesday.
They launched an air raid against Sana’a International Airport, as well as residential neighborhoods in the Sirwah district of the strategic central province of Ma’rib and the Abs district of the northern province of Hajjah.
There was no immediate word on the number of people who may have died or the extent of the damage.
In March 2015, Saudi Arabia launched a destructive military campaign in Yemen, backed by the US and Riyadh’s other allies, with the aim of restoring Hadi’s government and crushing the popular Ansarullah movement.
However, Ansarullah’s resistance through six years of indiscriminate war and blockade has prevented the objective from being fulfilled.