Yemen's warring sides have met for the first time in five months to discuss the redeployment of forces from the flashpoint port city of Hodeida. Wadah Dabish, a spokesman for the forces loyal to the internationally recognized government, says the meeting took place late on Sunday abroad a U.N. vessel. Lt. Gen. Michael Lollesgaard, head of the U.N. mission in Hodeida, led the meeting. Al-Masirah TV, run by rebel Houthis who are fighting government forces, also reported the meeting.
The sides met last in February. The warring parties in Yemen met in Sweden in September of last year to put an end to the deadly war, which has claimed the lives of thousands and led to one of the worst humanitarian crises over the world. However, because disputes over the strategic town of Hodeida and other main issues like the delivery of oil and the location of the central bank, the truce collapsed. The war in Yemen continues to claim lives every day despite the relatively calm atmosphere across the country.
Despite the Saudis entering the conflict on March 26, 2015 with a coalition composed of nine countries from the Middle East and Africa, Yemen's internationally recognized government has failed to defeat the Houthis. The ongoing war has resulted in the worst humanitarian crisis in the world, with an estimated 24 million people, close to 80 percent of the population, in need of assistance and protection in Yemen, according to the U.N.