Humanitarian ceasefire brokered by the UN in Yemen broken within hours
A humanitarian ceasefire that was brokered by the UN in Yemen has now been broken by new fighting by the warring sides. The ceasefire, which had just come into force, was broken by the airstrikes that were perpetrated by the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen’s capital, Sanaa and other Houthi dominant areas. There were also clashes reported within south-western city in Taiz- http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-33491472 (follow the link for more information).
Earlier, all sides had been urged by the UN Security Council to observe the agreed ceasefire from the midnight of Friday. However, the airstrikes were reported early Saturday in Taiz which is the third-largest city in the country and Sanaa, the capital. According to security officials, these airstrikes were followed by fighting on the ground by Shia rebels and their opponents. Each side was blaming the other for breaking the truce.
Since the air raids were started by the Arab alliance on 26 March, over 2,800 people have died. The raids were aimed at rolling back the advances by Iranian-backed Houthis across Yemen and reinstating President President Abdrabbu Mansour Hadi who has been exiled- http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/06/19/us-yemen-security-idUSKBN0OZ1IJ20150619 (follow the link for more information).
According to aid agencies, the Yemen blockade has made the current humanitarian crisis worse after several months of armed conflict. Over 80 percent of the 25 million people in Yemen are now in need of aid. The Associated Press reports that the early Saturday’s air raids were targeted at a military camp of the rebels.
Over the recent months, there have been conflicts between different groups in Yemen despite the fact that the major fight is between the Houthis, which is a group that forced the president to leave Sanaa this February and the forces that are loyal to the same President Abdrabbu Mansour Hadi.
After closing to the stronghold of the president late this March, the rebel forces faced a response from the coalition that Saudi Arabia leads which made Mr. Abdrabbu to intervene by launching air strikes in the Houthi Targets. States in the Gulf Arab region are accusing Iran of supporting the Houthis militarily and financially. However, Iran has so far denied the allegations.
The Saudi military’s spokesman, Brigadier Gen. Ahmed Asseri said earlier that the coalition want to know that the truce will be respected by the Houthis. He added that the coalition also wants to know what the terms of the agreement’s breach were. On the other hand, the leader of the Houthis, Abdelmalik al-Houthi said that the agreement was conditional adding that it depended on the regime and its mercenaries’ commitment- http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2015/07/yemen-truce-effect-150710220440465.html (follow the link for more information).
Currently, the conflict has displaced more than one million civilians. According to charities, there is no fuel and this makes reaching the people who need help difficult and also providing sufficient care within Yemen hospitals is becoming difficult. Although a humanitarian ceasefire was allowed by the coalition, most promises that were made to the needy have not materialized.
Yemen has a strategic importance to the world due to its position in Bab al-Mandab, which is a waterway that links the Gulf of Aden to the Red Sea, via which most oil shipments of the world are passed.