Yemen govt cautiously welcomes US peace plan
Yemen's exiled government has said it welcomes in principle a US-backed plan to resume peace talks with Iran-backed rebels on the basis of forming a unity government.
At a meeting in Riyadh, the cabinet gave an "initial welcoming to the ideas that came out of the meeting in Jeddah," which included US Secretary of State John Kerry, the government's sabanew.net website said late Saturday.
Kerry announced a fresh international peace initiative to resolve the 17-month-old conflict after meeting Thursday with Gulf counterparts, a British minister and the UN envoy to Yemen.
The plan offers Huthi rebels and their allies participation in a unity government but demands their withdrawal from Sanaa and other key areas, as well as surrendering heavy weapons to a third party.
The rebels had been demanding a unity government as the first step towards resolving Yemen's war.
But the internationally backed government of President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi wanted a rebel pullout from seized territory, including the capital, and a surrender of weapons, as the first steps, in line with a UN Security Council resolution on the crisis.
On Saturday, the government stressed its "readiness to positively deal with any peaceful solutions".