UN officials say that the warring parties in Yemen’s port city of Hodeidah have reached a preliminary compromise agreement on withdrawing their respective forces from the area around the port.
The mediation took place on a UN ship in the Hodeidah harbor, and both sides said the deal was acceptable. They are scheduling another meeting next week to finalize the deal, pending consultation with their respective leaderships.
The two sides had agreed to a pullout from Hodeidah during the Sweden peace talks, but neither side removed significant troops. Saudi-backed forces even suggested the Saudis might be forced to invade and conquer the city to ensure that the Houthis were expelled from the city.
The whole point of these deals was to keep the Saudis from conquering the city, and using military control to prevent humanitarian aid from reaching Houthi territory. Hodeidah is the route through which about 70% of food enters Yemen.
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