Hadi’s trip out West
The Friends of Yemen meeting terminated its single-day session Thursday in New York City, with participation from 39 representatives of countries, regions and international organizations.
Prior to the conference, Hadi paid a visit to the United Kingdom on Sept. 23 before heading for the United States.
Jamal Benomar, the U.N. special envoy to Yemen, said Saudi Arabia pledged approximately half of the donation, indicating that such a thing exceeded his expectations. He asserted the importance of the conference’s results in helping Yemen overcome different challenges.
A final statement made at the meeting said the meeting embodies the continuity of international support for the democratic transitional process in Yemen, led by President Hadi and based on the Gulf Initiative and its scheduled timeframe for implementation.
The statement asserted that all group members agreed Yemenis should lead the National Dialogue Conference process themselves, without foreign interference. The United Nations should be responsible for providing technical, logistical and financial expertise essential for holding the conference as well as encouraging all Yemeni factions to effectively participate in the dialogue, the statement indicated.
The statement also mentioned the Yemeni government’s efforts to reorganize the security and army institutions by the end of 2012 in conjunction with facing increasing threats by Al-Qaeda.
Badr Bin Aqeel, a political analyst, said Hadi’s visit proves to the entire world that the country is recovering, dreams are starting to be realized and Yemen is step-by-step approaching a departure from the bottleneck it is currently stuck inside.
“It is really beautiful that the visit came in the depth of national celebrations of the jubilee anniversary of 26 of the September revolution,” Bin Aqeel said. “This occasion bears various signs and meanings. It represents the sixth objective of the immortal Yemeni revolutions in line with the rest of the objectives so as to be implemented on the ground.”
Hadi’s visit to the United States and the United Kingdom is an indicator of appreciation for their efforts to assist Yemen overcome troubles and avoid wars, conflicts and polarization, according to Bin Akeel.
Hadi’s presence at the Friends of Yemen meeting carries good news for the national economy and solving problems so as to pave the way for a successful transitional phase, he added.
Bin Akeel also said Hadi wants to fulfill his promise to the nation, made when he took office in late February: Yes to the reconciliatory president.
For the first time, President Hadi pays a visit to the U.S since he took office at the beginning of this year. In the visit, Hadi met with the U.S Vice President Joe Biden at the White House in Washington.
Also during his overseas trip, Hadi met U.S. President Barack Obama on Tuesday on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly’s meetings. Obama joined Hadi and John Brennan, Obama’s chief counterterrorism advisor.
The state-run Saba News Agency reported that, in a meeting with U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, Biden commended the exceptional steps Hadi has made, particularly during a time of political crisis and while working to adopt the peaceful power transition.
The agency also reported that Biden described the steps Hadi made as “important and historical steps aimed to overcome the difficult circumstances and reach a compromise.”
Biden assured Hadi of President Obama and the U.S. administration’s commitment to supporting Yemen during its political transition to achieve the sought-after aims.
“The U.S. government will do what is necessary for the political process to have success in Yemen,” Biden said.
Hadi said six million Yemeni youth are unemployed and need job opportunities to live an honorable life, so as not to deviate from the right way, pointing out that if Yemen slid into civil war, it would be a big problem on regional and international levels.
Abdullah Sabri, a leader of the Joint Meeting Parties, said Hadi’s visit comes during a very sensitive time for Yemen within the transitional period because powerful countries are brokering for political compromise in Yemen at the same time as the Friends of Yemen conference was scheduled. The visit aims to get more political and financial support for Hadi, the reconciliation government and the National Dialogue Conference, which is scheduled for November.
“Looking at the announced results of Hadi’s visit, it can be said that the visit serves Hadi’s policies and the reconciliation government, supports some decrees concerning the military reorganizing, passes the Transitional Justice Law and establishes a committee to investigate the 2011 incidents,” Sabri said.
Sabri said Hadi’s visit is also negative indicator because it shows imbalance in Yemen’s external relations, particularly after Hadi’s refusal to meet with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. It also suggests that Hadi, who met with both the U.S. president and vice president, could have received orders from them, he said, implying that Yemen is now following the White House more than it was during the regime of former President Ali Abdullah Saleh.
Sabri said Hadi is determined to improve relations with the U.S. because it is powerful in Yemen.
“Hadi may be supported by the U.S. in the 2014 presidential elections, who knows?”