Yemen readies for reconciliation

July 17, 2012 at 2:18 PM
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UNITED NATIONS, July 17 (UPI) -- A national dialogue conference in Yemen will give all parties to the crisis a chance to embrace a new social contract, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said.

The security situation in Yemen has deteriorated in large part due to fighting between pro-government forces, supported by the United States, and al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula, the Yemeni branch of al-Qaida.

A U.N. Security Council resolution passed in June calls on Yemen to convene a national dialogue, restructure the military under a unified command and implement political reform with the aim of general elections in 2014.

Yemeni President Abdu Rabbo Mansour Hadi announced that he appointed a preparatory committee to lay the foundation for a national dialogue conference, earning Ban's praise.

"The national dialogue will be an opportunity for all actors in Yemen to collectively establish a new social contract and achieve national reconciliation," Ban said in a statement issued through his spokesman.

Ali Abdullah Saleh resigned as president of Yemen in February after enduring a year of demonstrations staged in opposition to his government. Violence attributed to AQAP increased since Hadi took over the presidency.

U.N. officials had said the security in the situation was hampering political development.

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