United Nations: The UN Security Council will meet on Wednesday to hear the UN envoy for Yemen report on a ceasefire deal and his latest efforts to end the nearly four-year war, diplomats said.
UN envoy Martin Griffiths was in Saudi Arabia on Monday for talks with Yemen’s leaders aimed at shoring up the truce in the lifeline port of Hodeida that was agreed during talks in Sweden last month.
Those talks followed meetings in the rebel-held capital of Sana’a over the weekend to discuss the next steps for a redeployment of Al Houthi rebel fighters and coalition-backed forces from Hodeida.
Al Houthi-held Hodeida was for months the main front line in the Yemen war after the forces of the legitimate government of Abd Rabbo Mansour Hadi supported by Saudi Arabia and its allies launched an offensive to recapture it in June.
The Red Sea port is the key point of entry for humanitarian aid and supplies to Yemen, where millions are on the brink of famine as the war has grinded on. UN agencies have said Al Houthis are looting humanitarian aid meant for the affected Yemenis for their war efforts. Al Houthis are also using the port to smuggle arms from Iran.
The United Nations has said that the truce has largely held in the city since the agreement came into force on December 18.
Last month, the Security Council adopted a resolution backing the deal agreed in Sweden that provides for the deployment of observers to oversee the truce.
Griffiths is hoping to bring the sides together again for a new round of peace talks, possibly in Kuwait, later this month.
The war between the Iranian-backed Al Houthis and the legitimate government escalated in March 2015, when President Hadi fled to Saudi Arabia, and the Riyadh-led coalition intervened following a request by Hadi.
The conflict has unleashed the world’s worst humanitarian crisis, according to the UN, which says 14 million Yemenis are on the brink of famine.
UN aid chief Mark Lowcock will also brief the council on Wednesday on the humanitarian situation.