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Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 22 June 2018

Saudi Arabia and UAE discuss Yemen with US and UK

UK's Boris Johnson organised the working dinner

US secretary of state Rex Tillerson delivers a speech during a meeting on the International Partnership against Impunity for the Use of Chemical Weapons, in Paris, France, 23 January 2018. Ian Langsdon / EPA
US secretary of state Rex Tillerson delivers a speech during a meeting on the International Partnership against Impunity for the Use of Chemical Weapons, in Paris, France, 23 January 2018. Ian Langsdon / EPA

The foreign ministers of Saudi Arabia and the UAE met with their British and American counterparts in Paris on Tuesday to discuss challenges in the Middle East.

The state-run Saudi Press Agency said that Saudi Arabia's Adel Al Jubeir, UAE's Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, US secretary of state Rex Tillerson attended a dinner hosted by foreign secretary Boris Johnson at the UK embassy.

AFP quoted a source as saying that Mr Johnson organised the working dinner to discuss finding a solution to the war in Yemen, where an Arab coalition — which includes Saudi Arabia and the UAE — is fighting rebels on behalf of the internationally recognised government.

The coalition intervened in the war in 2015 and has said that it was not against a political a solution, but it would require the Iran-backed Houthi fighters to surrender.

"The conflicts in Syria and Yemen have created two of the worst humanitarian crises of our time," Mr Johnson said ahead of the meeting.

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Yemen is the poorest country in the Middle East and the world's largest humanitarian disaster, according to the UN.

The Arab coalition said it will commit $1.5 billion (Dh5.5bn) in humanitarian aid for the country/

"We are backing a professionally planned and detailed humanitarian mission with military power and precision to guarantee that the humanitarian aid reaches the people who need it to lift their suffering," spokesman Col Turki Malki said in a statement on Monday.

The conflict has left more than 10,000 people dead and more than two million displaced.