The Saudi-led coalition said on Sunday that it welcomes the prisoner exchange agreement between the Yemeni government and the Houthi militia to exchange more than 1,000 detainees and prisoners, including 15 Saudis, as part of trust-building steps aimed at reviving a stalled peace process.
The statement from the Saudi side came after the Yemen’s warring sides agreed earlier during the day to exchange 1,081 detainees and prisoners during the first stage of talks in Switzerland.
The coalition spokesperson Turki Al Maliki told a press conference in Riyadh that the Yemeni government will release 681 prisoners and the Houthi militia will release 400 others.
Al Maliki said the coalition’s top priority is to recover the prisoners as soon as possible, adding that of the total 400 individuals to be freed by Houthis, there are 15 Saudi soldiers and four Sudanese nationals.
The spokesperson said that the exchange operation in Yemen would be under the supervision of the International Committee of the Red Cross.
“The coalition command appreciates the efforts of the United Nations Special Envoy for Yemen and the International Committee of the Red Cross in facilitating the agreement on prisoner exchange (reached by the Yemeni warring sides). The agreement is also the further embodiment of the results of the Stockholm negotiations,” said the spokesman.
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