United Nations to Convene Yemen Talks 'Shortly' in Sweden

A crucial moment: Yemen's warring sides to attend peace talks

In a surprise move, 12 days into their offensive against the vital Yemeni aid port of Hodeidah, the Saudi-led coalition has announced an immediate, albeit temporary, pause of the advance.

The report said that the countries agreed on supporting the UN's efforts on economic confidence-building measures and the government's attempts to implement economic reforms.

"I received firm assurances from the leadership of the Yemeni parties, the government of Yemen of course first, and then, Ansar Allah [Houthi movement] that they are committed to attending these consultations", Griffiths said.

UN Special Envoy for Yemen also said that the parties to the ongoing conflict in Yemen have almost reached an agreement on the exchange of prisoners.

The last round of talks in Geneva in September aimed at ending Yemen's nearly four-year-old war were cancelled after three days of waiting for a Houthi delegation, which failed to arrive.

David Beasley, who just returned from a three-day visit to Yemen, told the Security Council that "we do not need to wait for formal declarations about starvation or even a full report to act".

Outside Hodeidah, Saudi Arabian and UAE-led attacks have struck people displaced by violence, while Coalition attacks have impacted downtown areas of the city, including around al-Thawra hospital on November 11, prompting hundreds of patients and staff to flee in terror.

A source of the pro-government Giants Brigades said that the military leaders are still considering a major offensive that will push troops deep inside Hodeidah's neighborhoods and the strategic seaport controlled by the Houthis.

The truth, Abdulsalam said, "is that the coalition is preparing for a new round of aggression, which needs additional time".

Mark Beasley, the head of the World Food Programme, said: "This is not on the brink of a catastrophe".

Beasley recounted a conversation he had with a doctor at the hospital in the country's capital Sanaa: "He said 'every day about 50 children are brought to us".

The Security Council will discuss Yemen's conflict and humanitarian crisis at 3PM EST.

"I'm not asking that we end our alliance", Paul said.

On Friday, the United Nations envoy for Yemen said that he plans to visit Hodeidah next week to work toward a United Nations supervision over the Yemeni port that handles 80 percent of the humanitarian relief to the war-torn country.

Kuwait said this month there was a "positive view to contain the Gulf crisis", and a source familiar with U.S. policy said diplomats were putting forward a plan on Qatar.

The Saudi state news agency reported on Thursday that Saudi Arabia, the UAE, the United States and Britain had formed a committee to address the economic and humanitarian situation in Yemen, including through possible support of its central bank.

He said the country needed a substantial cash injection to stabilize its local currency, which is badly depreciated and ruining the average Yemeni's ability to buy food.

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