Yemeni Houthi suspends strike in Saudi Arabia for three days

Riyadh-Yemen’s Houthi group said on Saturday that it would suspend missile and drone attacks in Saudi Arabia for three days. The Peace Initiative said a Saudi-led coalition battle in Yemen could be a lasting commitment if it stopped airstrikes and lifted port restrictions.

The group also announced a three-day suspension of ground attack operations in Yemen, including the gas-producing region of Malibu, Houthi political office head Mahdi al-Mashat said in a television speech. ..

“This is a sincere invitation and a practical step to rebuild trust and take every aspect from the bargaining ground to the action ground,” said Mashat.

A one-sided initiative took place in the eighth year of the war between a group allied with Iran and a Saudi-led coalition, and violence has exacerbated in recent months. The conflict killed tens of thousands of people, mainly civilians, and put millions in the face of hunger and illness.

The Saudi-led coalition bombed the Houthi-controlled seaports of Hodeida and Salif on Saturday, the day after the group launched an extensive attack on Saudi Arabia, including Jeddah’s oil facility, with a large plume of black smoke.

Following the Jeddah attack, Friday’s crude oil prices rose more than 1% to over $ 120 a barrel.

Saudi Aramco oil storage facility
Saudi Aramco’s oil storage facility sucks a rogue wave after being attacked in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia on March 26, 2022. (Stringer / Reuters)

Ceasefire conditions

The lifting restrictions imposed by the coalition warships on the port of the Red Sea in Yemen were the main Houthi conditions of the ceasefire. Saudi Arabia says there is no blockade in the port, only preventing the smuggling of weapons.

Saturday’s initiative will continue if the coalition reopens the port and stops airstrikes, Mashat said, and if Saudi Arabia announces the withdrawal of foreign troops from Yemen and ceases support for local militias, the group will ground. He added that he would extend the suspension of the operation.

It is unlikely that the Kingdom will agree to such terms, as Riyadh seeks a comprehensive ceasefire at the same time as the reopening of the port and Sana’a airport.

The Saudi-led coalition last year proposed a one-sided ceasefire. The Houthi rejected the offer, saying that the humanitarian situation and the reopening of the port need to be addressed before peace talks.

Mr. Mashat said he was ready to release all prisoners, including Yemen’s brother Abd Rab Mansour Hadi.

The United Nations is also trying to secure a temporary truce for the Ramadan Islamic Moon, which begins in April, and before Riyadh hosts the Yemeni Party for talks later this month.

Conflicts are widely seen as proxy wars between Saudi Arabia and Iran, but the Houthi say they are fighting a corrupt system and foreign aggression.

By AzizEl Yaakoubi