From the Telegraph:
The United Arab Emirates (UAE), part of the Saudi-led coalition, announced on Sunday a pause in fighting in its campaign to take control of Yemen’s port city Hodeidah.
UN special envoy to Yemen, Martin Griffiths, has been shuttling between the warring parties to avert an all-out attack on the port, a lifeline for millions of Yemenis. He said on Thursday that he hoped negotiations could restart in the next few weeks.
A coalition led by Saudi Arabia and the UAE launched an offensive on Hodeidah on June 12 in the largest battle of the war that the United Nations fears risks triggering a famine in Yemen where an estimated 8.4 million people are on the verge of starvation.
The pause in the fighting is to suppport UN led peace efforts. The Houthi rebels, fighting against the UAE, have offered to give management of the city to the UN in a ceasefire effort. Meanwhile, the Saudi-led coalition wants the Houthi fighters to leave the coast, but the Houthi have already said they will not withdraw from the area.
“We welcome continuing efforts by UN Special Envoy, Martin Griffiths, to achieve an unconditional Houthi withdrawal from Hodeida city and port.
“We have paused our campaign to allow enough time for this option to be fully explored. We hope he will succeed,” UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash said on Twitter.
Embed from Getty Images
UN efforts may face a major challenge over control of the city.
Mr Griffiths has not said who would hold military control of the city under U.N. management.
The condition for a full withdrawal by the Houthis from Saudi Arabia and its allies has led to previous peace talks to collapse, and in his comments on Sunday Gargash made clear that if this was to happen again, the UAE would continue its military campaign.
“Failing these patient efforts, we believe that continued military pressure will ultimately bring the liberation of Hodeida and force the Houthis to engage seriously in negotiations.”
SANA’A, YEMEN – JUNE 27: People who have been displaced from Sea Port city of Hodeidah visit a displacement registration centre to register their names on June 27, 2018 in Sana’a, Yemen. (Photo by Mohammed Hamoud/Getty Images)
Yemeni government forces move armoured vehicles during an attack on the port city of Hodeidah, on the outskirts of Hodeidah, Yemen, 28 June 2018. Photo: Taleb Almamari/dpa (Photo by Taleb Almamari/picture alliance via Getty Images)Embed from Getty Images
SANA’A, YEMEN – JULY 01: A child who fled Hodeidah Port city of Yemen due to the escalated fighting, stands behind a fence at a displaced temporary shelter on July 01, 2018 in Sana’a, Yemen. Some 43,000 people have been displaced since the offensive imposed by the Saudi-led coalition started on 13 June, with more people displaced every day. (Photo by Mohammed Hamoud/Getty Images)