Yemen leader in Riyadh for talks on economic


The head of Yemen’s Presidential Leadership Council, Rashad Al-Alimi, on Saturday touched down in Riyadh on a private visit where he is expected to meet Saudi officials, the official Saba news agency reported.

Al-Alimi will discuss Saudi Arabia’s economic support to the council and its humanitarian interventions in Yemen.

He thanked the Saudi leadership for its support to the Yemeni people and the council and its continued efforts to return peace and stability to the country and alleviate the suffering of Yemenis.

An aide to Al-Alimi told Arab News that the president would meet senior Saudi officials to accelerate the distribution of a Saudi and UAE $3 billion financial package to the government.

Other items for discussion were other Saudi pledges such as a gas-fired power station in Aden, the UN-brokered truce with the Houthis, and other political and military issues.

“Reviving the economy is the (council’s) main challenge,” said the aide, who preferred to remain anonymous.

Before arriving in Riyadh, the Yemeni leader visited the UAE. He discussed supporting the council and his efforts to stabilize liberated areas and boost the economy with Emirati officials.

The visit takes place as the Yemeni currency plunges to a new record low of YER1,200 against the US dollar, increasing the prices of food, fuel, and transport.

The council is also facing growing public criticism for not addressing intensifying power cuts, mainly in hot and humid cities such as Aden and Al-Mukalla.

Al-Alimi leads an eight-member council that has ruled the country since April, when former President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi ceded power to the council and assigned it to engage in talks with the Iran-backed Houthis to end the war.

Last week, dozens of soldiers died in bloody infighting among different military units in the government-controlled southern province of Shabwa.

The council dismissed the security leaders involved in the infighting and formed a military committee to defuse tension.