Qatar has long called for a peaceful and political resolution to the ongoing war in Yemen.
Warring parties in Yemen agreed on Tuesday to renew the UN-brokered ceasefire following calls by international humanitarian organisations, including Qatar Charity.
“I count on the continued cooperation of the parties to meet their commitments and implement all elements of the truce and to negotiate in good faith to reach an expanded truce agreement, and to put Yemen on a path to sustainable peace,” said the UN’s Special Envoy for Yemen Hans Grundberg.
The extension came just hours after the ceasefire was due to expire following a previous extension. The truce initially came into effect on 2 April for two months before it was extended until 2 August.
On Monday, Qatar Charity joined global humanitarian organisations in calling for another renewal of the armistice. The organisations said the truce over the past four months has allowed Yemeni civilians to experience “the longest period of calm” since the conflict began more than seven years ago.
It also noted a significant drop in civilian casualties, though several breaches were reported in various areas.
Grundberg noted that the latest renewal included an expanded truce agreement that entails a regular payment of civil servant salaries. It also stipulated a mechanism over the opening of roads in Taiz and other governorates as well as more destinations to and from Sanaa.
“An expanded agreement would also provide an opportunity to negotiate a nationwide ceasefire, humanitarian and economic issues, and to prepare for the resumption of the Yemeni-led political process under UN auspices to reach a sustainable and just peace,” added the UN envoy.
The UN official said that he will be intensifying his engagements with all conflicting parties throughout the coming weeks of the truce.
Since 2015, Yemen has been a battleground between Iran-backed Houthi rebels and the Saudi-led coalition, which backs the internationally-recognised government.
According to the UN, the ceasefire led to a 60% decrease in civilian casualties and almost 50% drop in displacements across the war-torn country.
This came after Save the Children revealed that January was the deadliest month in Yemen since 2018, where one civilian was killed or injured every hour.
The increase was attributed to escalations between Houthi rebels and the Saudi-led coalition, after the former led attacks on several UAE sites.
During the first month of the truce, Yemen witnessed more than a 50% decrease in civilian casualties, per a report by the Norwegian Refugee council.
Another achievement was the reopening of direct flights between Sanaa, Amman, and Cairo. The UN said there were 36 round-trip flights between the cities, enabling families to reunite for the first time in years.
One other provision of the ceasefire entailed allowing 18 fuel vessels to enter the Houthi-controlled port of Hodeida, enabling hospitals and businesses. This enabled them to receive fuel and medical aid.
During the lull in fighting, 26 fuel shipments entered the Hodeida port.
“This should include the implementation of the full number and regularity of flights between the agreed destinations and Sana’a International Airport and the number of fuel ships entering Hudaydah port, as stipulated in the truce agreement,” he said.
The war in Yemen has created the world’s worst humanitarian crisis, where more than 14 million people – 80% of the population – are in acute need of humanitarian assistance. More than three million people have also been displaced.
Global humanitarian organisations warned that the situation would further deteriorate in the absence of a peaceful resolution.
Qatar has long called for a peaceful and political resolution to the ongoing war in Yemen, as well as an inclusive dialogue between all warring parties.