Ceasefire Holds: Yemen Has First Week Without Airstrikes Since 2015

Violence limited to unconfirmed claims of violations

Despite persistent claims of violations, the two-month ceasefire in Yemen is off to a very good start. This past week, not a single airstrike was reported, making it the first airstrike-free week Yemen has seen since early 2015. The ceasefire began on 4/2.

Airstrikes have been a defining part of the Yemen War, with some 25,000 strikes, overwhelmingly by Saudi Arabia, carried out. The airstrikes have been a driving source of casualties, particularly civilian deaths, since the war began.

Saudi Arabia used airstrikes against populated areas virtually from when the war began, and has become increasingly reliant on them. This has been costly, not just in civilian deaths, but financially.

Saudi Arabia’s armed forces went from an unusually expensive military for a nation its size to one of the world’s costliest, as they have been importing huge numbers of missiles and munitions from the West to keep the war going.

Despite the huge number of attacks, there is no sign the air war is bringing the Saudis anywhere near a military victory. Indeed, the ceasefire is being done to try to orchestrate a peace process, hoping for a political settlement as a way out of the endless conflict.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of Antiwar.com.