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Jordan approves to host UN-backed Yemen meeting on ‘prisoner exchange’

Jordan approves to host UN-backed Yemen meeting on ‘prisoner exchange’

Jordan’s Foreign Ministry statement confirmed on Tuesday that the next UN-backed Yemen meeting on prisoner exchange will take place in the capital Amman.

Jordan agreed to host the UN meeting between the Yemeni government and the Houthi rebels to discuss a prisoner swap deal. The meeting will be extremely important step for both sides, especially for thousands of families to be reunited. Jordan Ministry of Foreign Affairs, however, did not say any details regarding the talks.

Yemeni parties hoped recent repercussions in the issue of Hodeidah port won’t overshadow other issues, including the exchange of prisoners and detainees. According to Houthis sources, on Monday, Houthi representatives had left Sanaa to Amman in preparation for the talks with the government.

Prisoner exchange as the next step to settling Yemen conflict

Unfortunately, the prisoner exchange issue is still not clear given controversial information provided by both sides. Nor government, neither rebels don’t know an exact number of prisoners and detainees. Houthis denied the existence of thousands of detainees submitted by the government, claiming that they are fictitious or duplicate names or imprisoned for terrorist and criminal cases, according to Yemeni state-run news agency.

They also said that the group didn’t provide information about hundreds of other detainees, including Major General Faisal Rajab and the top official in Reform Party Mohammed Qahtan.

Observers fear Houthi intransigence will derail the implementation of the agreement, as the group has previously done with the Hodeidah file. Up till now, Houthis refuse to withdraw from Hodeidah and its port. They also rejected redeployment under the plan proposed by the head of Redeployment Coordination Committee Retired General, Patrick Cammaert.