UN envoy: Over 700 prisoners released since beginning of Yemen peace talks

Published July 1st, 2016 - 08:00 GMT
Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed, UN special envoy to Yemen, at the beginning of the peace talks in Kuwait. (AFP/File)
Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed, UN special envoy to Yemen, at the beginning of the peace talks in Kuwait. (AFP/File)

The UN special envoy for Yemen says the country’s warring sides have released more than 700 prisoners since the beginning of the peace talks aimed at ending the conflict gripping the impoverished state.

Speaking to reporters in Kuwait on Thursday, Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed released the figure without elaborating on where and when the captives were released.

The remarks came one day after the UN-mediated discussions between Houthi fighters and their allies, on the one hand, and Saudi-backed loyalists to the resigned president, Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, on the other side, were adjourned until July 15 after the holy month of Ramadan.

Negotiators have said that the suspension comes after weeks of deadlock in the talks.

The peace talks, which started in Kuwait City on April 21, were held against the backdrop of an open-ended ceasefire that began in the conflict-ridden country at midnight on April 10.

Warring parties also began face-to-face negotiations for the first time on April 30.

Elsewhere in his comments, the UN envoy said that a “de-escalation and coordination committee” made up of members of both sides to the conflict would be based out of Saudi Arabia’s southwestern Asir region to monitor the truce.


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