Martin Griffiths, the new United Nations special envoy for Yemen and a British international mediator, will begin work this month on the world’s worst humanitarian crisis. Griffiths is highly praised in the arena of private conflict mediation, having founded his own firm in 1999 that has brokered resolutions to insurgent situations in places in Africa, Asia, and Europe. He has also led various diplomatic and humanitarian organizations, and was an adviser to UN special envoys for Syria.
No matter how promising Griffiths’ background, however, the current peace talks on Yemen are based on what one diplomat called a “scandalous” framework that calls for one side, the Houthi rebels, to essentially “give up.”
So the question remains: Is UN-sponsored peace in Yemen even possible?