UN Security Council welcomes Yemen truce extension, urges Houthis to reopen Taiz Road

UN Security Council welcomes Yemen truce extension, urges Houthis to reopen Taiz Road

NEW YORK: The UN Security Council on Friday welcomed the extension of the truce between the Yemeni government and the Houthis, which was agreed a day earlier.

However, council members expressed concern about grave humanitarian effects of ongoing road closures around Taiz and called on the Iran-backed militia “to act with flexibility in negotiations and immediately open the main roads.”

Taiz governorate has been under siege since the start of the war, when the Houthis closed main routes and encircled the city center, largely cutting it off from the rest of the country.

The council members reiterated their appreciation of the steps taken by all sides to uphold the truce, which began on April 2 and has now been extended for another two months. It has led to “real and tangible benefits” for the Yemeni people, they said, including a significant reduction in civilian casualties and the improved flow of humanitarian aid.

In a joint statement, they welcomed the Yemeni government’s flexibility in allowing ships carrying fuel to enter Hodeidah port, and enabling international flights to resume between Sanaa, Amman and Cairo. They also commended regional partners for their support.

The council expressed hope that the truce will lead to “a durable ceasefire and an inclusive, comprehensive political settlement, under the auspices of the UN.” Members again emphasized the importance of a minimum of 30 per cent participation by women in decision-making processes in Yemen, in line with the outcomes of the National Dialogue Conference, as enshrined in Security Council Resolution 2624, which was adopted this year.

They encouraged all sides in Yemen to continue to engage with the UN’s special envoy for the country and “to negotiate and communicate with each other with a spirit of mutual respect and reconciliation.”

The risk of famine is also a great concern, council members said as they encouraged international donors to fully fund the UN humanitarian response to the crisis.

They also highlighted the need for “an inclusive, comprehensive political settlement to address the humanitarian and economic crises, and to protect civilians.”

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