UN officials reported sporadic clashes around the country, and a handful of Saudi airstrikes were also claimed, along with a Saudi claim of a missile fired by the Shi’ite Houthis. Despite all of this, however, the Yemen ceasefire, which went into effect Sunday, appears to be largely holding.
That’s good news for all concerned, as it raises hopes that next week’s UN-brokered peace talks are actually going to have something to work with. The hope is that the ceasefire will hold throughout the week, providing a good environment for the talks.
Previous ceasefires in Yemen haven’t lasted long, and at times seemed totally ignored. Likewise, the last significant effort at peace talks by the UN was a disaster, with the two sides never in the same room, until some pro-Saudi delegates attacked a Houthi press conference and started a brawl.
Over a year into the Saudi war, however, things have changed, and expectations that the Saudi military can produce a total, uncontested military victory have dimmed. That’s got everyone at least a little more interested in having some discussion on a post-war situation, even if publicly both sides are still downplaying the chances of big concessions.