India welcomes ceasefire in Yemen, calls for peace

India on Thursday said it calls for peace, security and prosperity for the people of Yemen and welcomes the announcement of a ceasefire in the eight-year-long conflict.

“We welcome the two months ceasefire in the Yemen conflict from April 2 on the initiatives of the UN Secretary General’s Special Envoy Hans Grundberg,” said Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi.

He further stated that India hopes that this truce will lead to a more comprehensive and durable cease-fire and build positive momentum for an inclusive political process to end the eight-year-long conflict in Yemen. “India has friendly ties with Yemen and hopes for peace, security and prosperity for the people of Yemen as well as for the region,” he said.

The truce announcement was made by Grundberg on April 1, on the second day of peace talks in Riyadh. The deal between the Saudi-led coalition and Iran-backed Houthi rebels – which can be extended if both agree – came into effect from Saturday.

Yemen’s civil war began in 2014 when Houthi insurgents – Shia rebels with links to Iran — “took control of Yemen’s capital and largest city, Sana’a, demanding lower fuel prices and a new government.

After failed negotiations, the rebels seized the presidential palace in January 2015, leading President Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi and his government to resign. Beginning in March 2015, Saudi Arabia led a coalition of Gulf states launched a campaign of economic isolation and air strikes against the Houthi insurgents. The US helped logistically and with intelligence.

The Saudi-led coalition has been fighting the Houthis, using mainly air strikes. In turn, Houthis have used drones and missiles to attack both Saudi Arabia and its ally, the United Arab Emirates.

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