Saudi-led coalition declares two-week ceasefire in Yemen

TEHRAN, Apr. 09 (MNA) – Saudi officials have announced a two-week ceasefire, starting on Thursday noon, in Yemen amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

The coalition claims that the measure is in line with efforts to contain the COVID-19 outbreak in Yemen and also to support UN efforts to end the devastating war.

The officials claimed the ceasefire is aimed at bringing the Ansarullah movement to the negotiating table for peace talks led by the United Nations, as well as to halt the spread of the novel coronavirus in the country, which has already been wracked by famine and disease for years due to the war.

The health system in Yemen is essentially nonexistent, but those facilities that do exist have been concentrating on addressing a cholera outbreak that has afflicted more than 2.2 million people since 2016, killing thousands. Medical supplies are hard to come by amid the continuing Saudi blockade of major Yemeni ports, and running water is equally scarce.

According to Sputnik, Mohammed Abdulsalam, a spokesperson for the Anasrullah movement, said on Wednesday that the group had presented its vision for an end to the war and blockade that would "lay the foundations for political dialogue and a transitional period." However, Reuters noted it was unclear how the Houthis would respond to the Saudi move.

MNA/4896155/Sputnik

News Code 157421

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