GCC withdraws mediation efforts in Yemen: Al-Jazeera

15:51, May 23, 2011      

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Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal (R) greets his Kuwaiti counterpart Sheikh Mohammed Sabah al-Salem al-Sabah at an air base in Saudi capital Riyadh May 22, 2011. The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) foreign ministers get together here on Sunday to discuss the results of the GCC efforts to resolve the Yemeni political standoff. (Xinhua/Wang Bo)

The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries announced Sunday night to suspend their efforts to mediate the impasse in Yemen, Al-Jazeera TV reported.

The GCC "decided to suspend their initiative in the absence of the propitious conditions," Al-Jazeera quoted a statement issued from Riyadh as reporting.

Gulf foreign ministers made the decision after Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh refused to sign the Gulf-brokered deal while the opposition rejected going to the Republican Palace to sign it together with him. "I would sign the Gulf deal only if the opposition's representatives come to the Republican Palace to sign it with me at the same time, because the opposition would be our partner in the power for the next 90 days," Saleh said in a speech he delivered through the state television after his ruling party signed the deal.

On Saturday evening, the opposition unilaterally signed the deal and refused to meet Saleh's condition to go to his presidential palace to sign it again on Sunday.

Saleh has thwarted the U.S.-backed deal three times since April.

If Saleh signs the deal, he should leave office within 30 days in exchange for immunity from prosecution according to the terms of the deal, which also authorized the opposition to form a new government within seven days and arrange for holding presidential and parliamentary elections in 60 days.

Source: Xinhua

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