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Yemen Government Welcomes UN Road Map to End War 


Yemen's internationally recognized government has welcomed U.N.-led efforts to end the country's civil war after the warring parties committed to take steps towards a cease-fire.

The Arabian Peninsula's poorest country has been gripped by conflict since the Iran-backed Houthi rebels overran Sanaa in 2014, triggering a Saudi-led military intervention in support of the government the following year.

A U.N.-brokered cease-fire brought a sharp reduction in hostilities in April 2022. The truce expired in October last year, though fighting largely remains on hold.

On Saturday, the U.N. special envoy for Yemen, Hans Grundberg, said the two sides had committed to a new cease-fire and to engage in a U.N.-led peace process.

The Yemeni government said later it "welcomed the statement issued by the Special Envoy... regarding the efforts made to reach a roadmap under the auspices of the United Nations to end the war."

The government, in a statement released late Saturday, also "expressed its thanks" to Saudi Arabia and Oman for their efforts to advance the peace process.

Ahmed Nagi, a senior analyst at the International Crisis Group think tank, said the United Nations would play the leading role in the process.

Its announcement "frames the progress made in negotiations over the past months", he told AFP.

It signals that the "U.N. now leads the negotiations, with the Saudis stepping back and allowing the U.N. to handle future political deals", he said.

Saudi Arabia is pushing to extricate itself from the conflict, despite slim hopes of a lasting peace.

Many analysts are pessimistic that Riyadh's plans for a downsized military role will bring peace to Yemen, which remains deeply fractured along religious, regional and political lines.