Muscat Negotiations: Agreement Reached to Release Mohammed Qahtan in Exchange for 50 Houthi Prisoners



The United Nations and the Yemeni government negotiating delegation confirmed on Wednesday that an agreement has been reached to release prominent politician Mohammed Qahtan in a prisoner exchange deal with the Houthi militia. According to the Anadolu Agency, government negotiation team spokesperson Majed Fadail announced that the ongoing negotiations in Muscat have concluded with an agreement to release Mohammed Qahtan, a leader of the Yemeni Congregation for Reform (Islah) party, in exchange for 50 Houthi prisoners.


The office of the UN envoy to Yemen also stated that the current round of negotiations, which commenced in the Sultanate of Oman concerning the issue of detainees linked to the conflict, is proceeding in a positive and constructive atmosphere thus far.


Through its platform on "X," the office confirmed that the parties have reached an understanding regarding procedures for releasing detainees related to the conflict, including Mohammed Qahtan. The office emphasized the importance of continuing negotiations on this understanding with a sense of responsibility to achieve tangible results toward the release of all detainees linked to the conflict under the principle of "all for all."


The UN envoy's office clarified that the current round of negotiations is part of ongoing UN efforts to support the parties in fulfilling their commitments under the Stockholm Agreement.


 The Houthi militia is still delaying the disclosure of the fate of politician Mohammed Qahtan, who has been abducted for more than nine years to date.


In this context, the Houthi-controlled Saba news agency reported that the head of the militia's negotiating delegation, Abdul Qader Al-Murtadha, stated that the agreement includes the release of Mohammed Qahtan in exchange for 50 Houthi prisoners. If Qahtan is found deceased, his body will be handed over in return for the delivery of 50 bodies of Houthi militia fighters by the government side.


Qahtan, a prominent leader in the Yemeni Congregation for Reform (Islah) party, was abducted by the Houthi militias on April 5, 2015. He is one of four individuals whom UN Security Council Resolution 2216 of 2015 demanded the Houthis release.

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