US welcomes Yemen peace deal between gov’t, separatists

WASHINGTON: The U.S. welcomed Wednesday a peace pact between the internationally-recognized Yemeni government and southern separatists as a “pivotal” step towards the achievement of a broad political settlement.

“We are hopeful that with this agreement, all parties will work together to end the conflict and to achieve the peace and stability that Yemen’s people deserve,” State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus said in a statement.

Signed Tuesday, the deal ends conflict between the internationally-recognized Yemeni government, and the United Arab Emirates-backed Southern Transitional Council (STC) over several southern cities.

Yemen’s Deputy Prime Minister Salem al-Khanbashi, representing the Yemeni government; and Nasser al-Khabaji, the representative of the STC, signed the agreement in the presence of Yemeni, Arab and other foreign leaders and politicians.

Ortagus said that through the signing the parties “demonstrated the spirit of compromise needed from all sides to reach a lasting solution,” urging all parties to commit to its implementation.

“We will continue to work with our international partners to bring peace, prosperity, and security to Yemen,” she added.

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