Egypt has given its backing to Saudi Arabia’s airstrikes, alongside other countries including Jordan and Pakistan, which provoked a negative response from the Al-Houthi’s foreign allies.
Iranian Assistant Foreign Minister Hussain Amir Abdullahyan told official Iranian news agency Fars News on Thursday: “We expect that Egypt should be more cooperative in reaching a political resolution in Yemen.”
Egypt’s foreign ministry responded to the statement saying it was “inappropriate and unacceptable” and that it “contradict(s) Iran’s attempts to establish good relations with Egypt through constructive dialogue and cooperation”.
Iranian state media has taken a negative stance towards Egypt, increasingly after the airstrikes in Yemen. So far in April, Fars News has been reporting many rumours on Egyptian affairs, including on the alleged death of its former president Mubarak and the death of many Egyptian soldiers who were fighting in Yemen.
Military spokesperson Mohamed Samir denied any military intervention by the Egyptian armed forces in Yemen in an official statement last Tuesday. However, some Egyptian warships were reportedly sent to the Gulf of Aden to protect the route of Suez Canal.
As ships en route between the GCC and the Mediterranean pass through Yemen’s coastal waters, the country’s security status is crucial for several countries, especially oil-importing ones. However, it has been witnessing several waves of conflict and division attempts between the north and the south.
The Egyptian foreign ministry reviewed the Iranian stance as “unacceptable intervention in Arab affairs, especially at a time when Arab countries are working to contain and address the negative consequences of such interventions”.
The United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCR) reported the fighting in Yemen, including airstrikes by the Saudi -led coalition, had killed at least 364 civilians. This figure includes the deaths of at least 84 children, in the period until 14 April.
On Saturday, the airstrikes continued in the cities of Taiz and Saa’dah in southern Yemen and the bombing of the presidential palace in Taiz, the Houthi-owned TV channel Almasirah reported.
Unidentified militia allegedly fired on a hospital in southern Yemen on Saturday after a week-long fight between Houthis and opposing gunmen in the vicinity of the hospital.