(Photo credit: CNN)
The UN-brokered ceasefire between Yemen and the Saudi-led coalition expired on 2 October, as officials warn that the agreement is at a “dead end” due to the reluctance of Riyadh and its allies to lift their blockade on the country and alleviate the severe humanitarian crisis.
“During the six months of the truce, we have not seen any seriousness to address the humanitarian file as an urgent priority,” Sanaa’s UN negotiating team said in a statement on 1 October, while accusing the Saudi-led coalition of stalling in the negotiations over matters that would “alleviate the suffering of the Yemeni people.”
“Since the start of the truce, despite the delay, we have been keen not to miss any opportunity that could lead us towards peace,” the statement added.
On the same day, the head of Yemen’s Supreme Political Council, Mahdi al-Mashat, issued a warning against international oil companies operating in the country, calling on them to “stop looting Yemen’s sovereign wealth, starting from six o’clock in the evening tomorrow (Sunday) [or face] full responsibility.”
This is the second such warning within a week, and has raised concerns over the future of the truce agreement, as the coalition continues to loot Yemen’s oil and gas under the eye and facilitation of foreign powers, and in clear violation of the ceasefire.
The Ansarallah resistance movement released a video on 1 October showing the group’s leader Abdel Malik al-Houthi urging the coalition and the foreign companies which aid its looting to not only heed Mashat’s warning, but to lift the blockade on Yemen immediately, and that otherwise they “would regret it.”
Since the initial implementation of the truce on 2 April, the coalition has continuously violated the agreement through persistent bombardment, looting of Yemen’s natural wealth, and the seizure of UN-approved humanitarian fuel vessels.
A Yemeni military source told media that in the 24 hours preceding the expiration of the truce, the coalition committed 122 violations of the agreement through warplane and spy drone operations over Marib, Al-Jawf, Hajjah, Saada, and other areas.
The UN Special Envoy to Yemen Hans Grundberg warned on 30 September that the truce must be extended for the country to avoid “slipping into a war again,” and on 1 October an updated UN proposal for an extension of the ceasefire was received by the warring parties.