UAE Press: Al Houthis’ belligerence must be curbed

ABU DHABI, On Tuesday, Al Houthi rebels attacked a Saudi Arabian oil tanker in the Bab Al Mandab, an attack that was repulsed by the maritime forces of the international coalition working to restore the legitimate government of President Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi to our Arab brothers in Yemen, a UAE newspaper has said.

“The incident, however, underscores a series of points that need to be remembered if an agreement is to be reached to return that troubled land to peace and stability,” said Gulf News in an editorial on Thursday.

The paper added, “When President Hadi was overthrown three years ago, Al Houthi rebels responsible were but a lightly armed clan with political aspirations.

“Now, they are a terrorist force with the capability of launching concerted missile attacks against the cities and centres of population in Saudi Arabia. They have also garnered the evil means to mine the international waterway of the Bab Al Mandab Strait and to pose a threat to vessels passaging the international maritime route to the Suez Canal, as Tuesday’s attack confirms.

“This is a force that has no compunction in targeting humanitarian vessels plying those international waters a passageway that can never be allowed to fall under the influence of Al Houthi’s masters and armourers. And the only way that Al Houthis could ever achieve the capability of mining seaways and firing missiles is with the technology, training and logistical support from the Iranian Revolutionary Guard.”

The editorial went on to say that the conflict in Yemen is part of a far broader picture, and finding a path to peace is all the more complicated. “The conflict in Yemen is Iran’s proxy war, with its masters in Tehran trying to advance their sectarian and political agenda to forge a crescent of influence from the Bab Al Mandab to the Mediterranean, using proxy forces Hezbollah, its militias and Al Houthis, from Yemen to Lebanon, in Syria and Iraq as its agents of change,” it said.

“In the early months of this conflict, Al Houthi rebels had every opportunity to reach an honourable deal, to be treated as equals among their peers, to bring lasting and stable peace to Yemen. Yet, at every opportunity, they chose a path of conflict a path that was dictated from across the Arabian Gulf,” it added.

In conclusion, the Dubai-based daily said, “If there are now to be talks on finding lasting peace that our Arab brothers justifiable deserve, it must come without Tehran pulling the strings on its Yemeni puppets. It is Iran who has stoked the fires of this conflict solely to advance its agenda.”

Source: Emirates News Agency