The UN Special Envoy for Yemen wants to build on Sunday’s announcement of the largest prisoner exchange agreement in the five-year conflict to pave the way for a national ceasefire and a political solution to end the war, he said.
Yemen’s warring parties agreed to exchange 1,081 prisoners as part of trust-building steps aimed at reviving a stalled peace process, the United Nations and sources said.
“I was told that it’s very rare to have prisoner releases of this scale during the conflict, that they mostly happen after a conflict,” UN envoy Martin Griffiths told reporters in the Swiss village of Glion where the deal was announced.
But the timing, sequence and logistics of the exchange were still being finalised by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), which will organise the transfers, he said, calling for further releases.
Griffiths is trying to restart political negotiations to end the war, which has killed tens of thousands of people and caused what the United Nations describes as the world’s largest humanitarian crisis with millions on the brink of famine.
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September 28, 2020