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Saudi-led coalition declares 5-day Yemen truce

The truce will take effect from midnight on Sunday with the coalition reserving the right to respond to ‘military activity’ by the Houthis

Published: Updated:

The Saudi-led coalition that has bombed the militia Houthi group in Yemen since March unilaterally declared a five-day humanitarian truce from Monday to allow aid deliveries, the official Saudi Press Agency reported.

The ceasefire will take effect from midnight on Sunday, a statement on Saturday said, with the coalition reserving the right to respond to “military activity or movement” by the Houthis.

SPA said the decision was taken at the request of Yemen’s President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi, who has taken refuge in the Saudi capital with much of his government.

Hadi, whose supporters have recaptured most of the southern port of Aden from the Houthi militia after four months of war, wanted the truce for the “delivery and distribution of the maximum amount of humanitarian and medical aid,” it said.

Two previous ceasefires brokered by the United Nations failed to take hold.

Al Arabiya News Channel also reported late Saturday that Abd al-Karim al-Houthi, brother of the militia group’s leader, was captured in the port city of Aden, citing sources.

The frontlines of Yemen’s war shifted in favor of the Gulf states which support Hadi earlier this month when, in coordination with forces loyal to him, they managed to drive the Houthis out of the southern city of Aden and much of the surrounding areas.

The coalition has been bombing the Houthi militia and army forces loyal to former president Ali Abdullah Saleh since March 26, aiming to push them back from southern and central areas and restore the country’s exiled government.

A letter by Hadi, who fled to Riyadh, to the King of Saudi Arabia on Friday asked for the ceasefire to allow for humanitarian supplies to be delivered to the war-torn country, SPA said.

(With AFP and Reuters)