Yemen's Houthi rebels renew Marib campaign amid diplomatic push

Yemen's Houthi rebels renew Marib campaign amid diplomatic push
2 min read
28 March, 2021
Saudi-led coalition jets bombed the Houthi rebels as they continued the offensive to claim Marib, while UN and US diplomats traveled to Riyadh to discuss a ceasefire.
The Houthis termed the Saudi ceasefire offer 'nothing new' [Getty]
Yemen's Houthi rebels launched fresh attacks on Sunday as part of their attempt to capture the oil-rich province of Marib.

The fierce ground offensive in Marib, the only governorate in northern Yemen not controlled by the Houthis, comes amid a new push by diplomats to end the war.

The US and UN envoys to Yemen, Martin Griffiths and Timothy Lenderking, met with Houthi representatives this week in Oman to discuss Saudi Arabia's new ceasefire proposal.

The two travelled to the Saudi capital Riyadh on Sunday to discuss the proposal and the Houthi response with officials from Saudi Arabia and the Yemeni goverment led by Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi.

The Iran-backed Houthi rebels rejected the ceasefire offer as "nothing new", demanding that a Saudi-led air and sea blockade of the country be lifted before the group ceases hostilities.

Yemeni Foreign Minister Ahmad Awad bin Mubarak condemned the rebel group for continuing its battle for Marib despite the ceasefire offer, state media reported.

The rebels' offensive did not make much ground on Sunday, as it was met with Saudi-led coalition bombing.

A number of women and children were injured in the region on Sunday, a local source told The New Arab's Arabic-language sister site, after the Houthis fired rockets towards a camp for displaced civilians.

Saudi Arabia and allies launched an offensive against the Houthis in 2015 shortly after the rebel group captured the capital Sanaa.

The war, now in its sixth year, has claimed thousands of lives and created what the United Nations calls the world's worst humanitarian crisis, with millions at risk of famine.

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