The United States has imposed sanctions on two Houthi military officials leading the Iran-aligned movement’s offensive to seize Yemen’s gas-rich Marib region, the US Special Envoy on Yemen said on Thursday.
Tim Lenderking urged the group battling a Saudi-led coalition for over six years to de-escalate and engage seriously with US and UN efforts for a ceasefire needed to end the war, a top foreign policy priority for the Biden administration.
“The Houthis are not winning in Marib. Instead they are putting a great deal of stress on an already very fragile humanitarian situation, they are putting the lives of 1 million internally displaced people … in danger,” Lenderking said.
He said the US would on Thursday impose sanctions on the head of the general staff leading the Houthi’s Marib offensive, Muhammad Abd Al-Karim Al-Ghamali, and on a leader of Houthi forces assigned to the advance, Yousuf al-Madani.
“If there were no offensive, if there were commitment to peace, if the parties are all showing up to deal constructively with the UN envoy there would be no need for designations,” Lenderking told a virtual media briefing.
Lenderking welcomed direct talks between Saudi Arabia and Iran but said he has not yet seen positive Iranian engagement to end the Yemen conflict, which has killed tens of thousands of people and left millions facing famine.
“I do think this is potentially a constructive engagement and we wish both parties success because it will be not only good for overall tensions in the region but there should be positive impact on the Yemen conflict in particular,” he said.
The envoy said Washington wants a long-term solution beyond a ceasefire and urged Tehran to support peace talks.
Source » iranintl