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UN envoy seeks to secure ceasefire in Yemen by mid-June - media

May 31, 2015, 22:48 UTC+3 KUWAIT CITY
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KUWAIT CITY, May 31. /TASS/. United Nations Special Envoy for Yemen Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed is seeking to secure another ‘humanitarian ceasefire’ in Yemen by mid-June, or before the beginning of the Moslem holy month of Ramadan, the Asarq Al-Awsat Pan-Arabic newspaper said on Sunday.

The newspaper said citing an informed source that all sides had "agreed ‘in principle’ to restart the talks, which were due to take place in Geneva last Thursday, and that Ould Cheikh Ahmed was aiming for them to begin before the start of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which starts on June 17."

The U.N. envoy has been in Yemen since Friday to discuss with representatives of both the authorities and the Ansar Allah movement (the Houthis) new proposals on a new ceasefire and restart of intra-Yemen talks. Ould Cheikh Ahmed is said to have managed to find points of contact between the sides concerning such talks.

Since August 2014, Yemen has been suffering from a severe political and security crisis. In late January 2015, armed groups of Ansar Allah (Houthi rebels) seized the country’s capital city of Sana’a and forced President Abd Rabuh Mansur Hadi and the government to announce resignation. The president tried to hide in the port city of Aden but after the Houthi seized this city on March 25 he had to flee the country. After Abd Rabuh Mansur Hadi called for help from the Gulf countries, Saudi Arabia’s air force supported by aviation of Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates launched an operation Decisive Storm against the Houthis on March 26. Later, this operation was followed by another one, Renewal of Hope.

On April 14, the UN Security Council has adopted resolution 2216 that stipulates arms and military equipment embargo to Houthi rebels. The draft document was proposed by Jordan, the United States and Britain. Fourteen U.N. Security Council member countries supported the resolution, including China and Venezuela, while Russia abstained from voting.

In early May, the Saudi-led coalition announced a five-day humanitarian ceasefire, which has not been extended.

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