Ahmed Omar Ben Fareed

Sun - 03 Mar 2019 - 04:41 PM ،،،

 In an interview with Reuters Ahmed Ben Fareed said, "A U.N.-mediated peace deal that fails to address the Southerners wish for self-determination would be “dangerous” and could trigger a new conflict".

He spoke about the war between the Iranian supported Houthi movement and Yemen’s internationally recognized government headed by President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi and the Southerners who are calling for independence and self-determination.

The southerners who are represented by the STC are not included in the peace talks mediated by U.N. negotiator Martin Griffiths as a party in its own right.

Ahmed Omar Ben Fareed, a senior member of the Southern Transitional Council (STC), told Reuters the south needed to be included in the peace process to avoid further conflict if a deal does not satisfy their demand for self-determination.

“They will not accept this and they will fight again,” Bin Fareed told Reuters.

“So you have two choices: Start another war against them to start another crisis, or to understand the aspirations of the people, and to avoid any political crisis or unrest in the region. They will likely defend their interests if they feel their interests are marginalized in the diplomatic process.”

"Members of the STC met Griffiths three times and he understands their aspirations", Bin Fareed said.

“He promised us that we will be at the table. But when?”

Excluding the STC  when talking on a new constitution, a national government and preparation for national elections would be “a difficult scenario for us”.

“Our forces are under the coalition command. We’re not under the leadership of Hadi, but under the leadership of the coalition,” he said.

The STC’s chairman in the European Union said that the southern resistance was not originally an organised force but that did not stop them from taking up arms to fight the Houthis.

He added we were later able to form a force with the help of the Arab coalition in the form of the 'Elite Forces' and the 'Security Belt'.