Warning of a civil war in Yemen if factions don’t renounce violence
The leader of Yemen’s largest and most powerful tribe has urged the country’s factions, including al-Qaeda, to renounce violence and open a dialogue. The alternative, he said, is armed conflict.
Yemen’s president has warned that if next month’s dialogue attempt fails, his country could descend into civil war.
More than a year of political turmoil has rocked Yemen, surrounding a successful popular and tribal uprising to force the resignation of the despotic Ali Abdullah Saleh. The disarray has left an opening for militants to solidify their strongholds in the country.
Though Mr Saleh is out of office, he and his supporters are accused of continuing to meddle in Yemen’s affairs.
Sheik Sadeq al-Ahmar, leader of Hashid tribal confederation, told the first meeting of the alliance of Yemen’s tribes on Saturday that the Hawthi Shiite Muslims in the north, the armed secessionists in the south and al-Qaeda must reject violence and join in the political process, without preconditions.
He said all of Yemen’s political parties, tribes and civil society groups should take part in the national dialogue, starting 15 November.
“The road to solving problems is to leave arms behind and turn to dialogue,” he said, “so that the Yemeni people will not be forced to resort to the logic of blood.”
President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi said last week at the UN in New York that the national dialogue would be crucial for the future of the shaky, war-scarred and impoverished country.
He warned that if the national dialogue failed, the country would face a civil war.
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