Yemeni FM in Kuwait for Talks on Gulf War POWs
Yemeni Foreign Minister Abu Bakr Al Kurbi arrived in Kuwait Sunday for talks on his country's mediation efforts in the dispute between the emirate and Baghdad over Kuwaiti prisoners of war held in Iraq since the Gulf War.
The minister said on arrival he was carrying a message from Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh to Kuwait's emir, Sheikh Jaber Al Ahmed Al Sabah, concerning "efforts by Yemen to resolve the issue of Kuwaiti prisoners in Iraq," reported the official Kuwaiti news agency, KUNA.
He added that his talks with Kuwaiti officials would include Yemeni efforts concerning the “plight of more than 600 Kuwaiti POWs still languishing in Iraqi jails ten years after the war to liberate Kuwait.”
Kurbi said his two-day visit came within the framework of boosting bilateral relations.
He added that the POWs issue was an important one for Yemen, pointing out that President Saleh had discussed the same issue with Iraqi officials.
Kuwait maintains that more than 600 people, mostly its citizens, disappeared during the Iraqi occupation from August 1990 to February 1991, and says the missing are still being held in Iraq.
Iraq has admitted to taking prisoners, but said it lost track of them during the Shiite Muslim uprising in southern Iraq after the country's retreat from Kuwait in March 1991.
Baghdad, meanwhile, says that 1,555 Iraqis have disappeared or are being held in Kuwait.
Kurbi said that “the message also includes other issues of common concern to both Kuwait and Yemen, in addition to exploration of means to boost bilateral ties.”
The Yemeni diplomat will meet with the emir on Monday morning, followed by meetings with Crown Prince Sheikh Saad Al Sabah and Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah Al Sabah.
For his part, Sheikh Sabah praised the “strong relations tying Kuwait and Yemen,” emphasizing that the two countries shared mutual concerns, according to KUNA.
The Kuwaiti minister noted that cooperation between Gulf Cooperation Countries (GCC) and Yemen was ongoing and would continue - Albawaba.com
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