Yemen’s warring parties reach agreement to extend truce for 2 months

Efforts exerted by the UN and other international powers succeeded in convincing Yemen’s warring sides to initially accept a proposal of extending the recent two-month nationwide truce, a government official said.

“Both warring sides expressed their initial agreement during their meetings with the UN envoy to Yemen, Hans Grundberg, who suggested the extension of the truce for additional two months,” the local government source said on condition of anonymity to Xinhua news agency on Wednesday.

Yemen’s Presidential Leadership Council (PLC) has officially informed the UN of its agreement to renew the truce but laid down a number of conditions, according to the source.

“The PLC agreed to extend the truce until August 2 if certain conditions were met, including opening the blocked roads and ending the Houthi siege on the strategic city of Taiz,” he added.

On Tuesday, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres had a phone call with Rashad Al-Alimi, PLC President, to discuss the implementation of the UN-brokered truce and political and security developments in Yemen, Xinhua news agency reported.

“The UN chief made a pledge to persuade the Houthis to implement the previous terms of the truce, including opening the blocked roads for Taiz, and preparing for an inclusive political settlement in the country,” said the Yemeni official.

The government official expected an official announcement to be issued by Grundberg in the upcoming hours to extend the UN-brokered truce in Yemen.

Another Yemeni official confirmed to Xinhua that the negotiating team of the Houthi rebel militia also expressed their leaders’ initial agreement to extend the truce, which expires on June 2.

Starting April 2, the internationally-recognised Yemeni government and the Houthi group have been largely observing the UN-brokered two-month ceasefire despite sporadic armed confrontations.

The truce marks the first breakthrough in years to end the war in Yemen that has killed tens of thousands of people and pushed the country to the brink of starvation.




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