Egypt holds talks with Houthi rebels, Iran in attempt to restore calm to international waters

Egyptian officials are conducting talks with representatives from the Iran-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen as well as with Iran itself in an attempt to restore calm to international waters after Houthi attacks have severely impacted Red Sea shipping lanes, Arabic-language news outlet Al-Araby Al-Jadeed reports.

In recent days, “intensive Egyptian security meetings have taken place with prominent leaders from the Ansar Allah group,” an anonymous Egyptian official tells the news outlet, using the Houthi rebel group’s official title.

Cairo reportedly criticized the January 12 US and UK-led strikes on Houthi targets in Yemen, as well as the subsequent US strikes, saying it believes the answer to ending the Houthi attacks in the Red Sea is not militaristic.

“It is better to push for a solution that accelerates the end of the main cause, which is the ongoing war in the Gaza Strip,” the Egyptian official tells Al-Araby Al-Jadeed, referring to the Houthi’s claim that it is targeting ships with ties to Israel as a show of support for Palestinians in Gaza.

As part of Egypt’s efforts to calm international waters, Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian is expected to visit Cairo in the coming days, the news outlet adds.

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