Moscow proposes peace talks for Yemen - Patrushev

The fighting and air strikes delivered by the coalition have put Yemen on the brink of a humanitarian catastrophe, Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev said.

The fighting and air strikes delivered by the coalition have put Yemen on the brink of a humanitarian catastrophe, Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev said.

"The fighting in Aden and coalition air strikes on militants' positions have put Yemen on the brink of a humanitarian catastrophe," Patrushev said in an interview with the newspaper Izvestia.

"Bombardments and any [other] operations that lead to mass casualties are absolutely unacceptable. It is necessary to arrange peace talks and to select a platform suitable for all sides. We are ready to back any constructive proposals," the Russian Security Council secretary noted.

More than 600 people have been killed, almost 300,000 have fled their homes, and about 250,000 have been granted a refugee status since the beginning of the hostilities in Yemen, he said.

"We insist on putting the United Nations Organization and its Security Council rather than individual states or groups in charge of the negotiating process," Patrushev said.

"Military resolution of the Yemen conflict will repeat the scenario of Libya, Syria or Iraq. Life shows that attempts to resolve problems of particular countries within coalition frameworks not only fail to succeed but also escalate confrontations and lead to breakups of countries. A siege laid to large populated areas and states as a whole invariably results in a humanitarian catastrophe," the Russian Security Council secretary pointed out.

Moscow suggests that the UN Security Council pass the Russian draft resolution on "humanitarian pauses" in Yemeni violence so that people can be evacuated and humanitarian supplies can be brought in.

Over the past week alone, the Russian authorities have evacuated from Yemen more than 500 citizens of Russia, CIS states, European and American nations, he said.

The United States and some of its allies have dubbed the Yemen events as a coup and said that military methods could be used in reinstating President Abd Rabuh Mansur Hadi in office. Yet the term of office of Hadi, who first fled to the southern city of Aden and left Yemen in a later period, has already expired, he added.

"It seems there is an analogy [between Yemen] and the Ukraine situation in which legitimate President Viktor Yanukovych had to leave Kiev and the country. However, the Americans and the Europeans did not recognize those events as a coup but immediately declared that the president who had left the country lost his legitimacy as the chief of state," Patrushev said, pointing to "double standards" demonstrated by the United States.

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