UN envoy bound for Yemen, Saudi Arabia for Yemen war talks

January 3, 2019 GMT

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The United Nations’ envoy for Yemen is heading to the region this weekend to talk with government and rebel leaders as international efforts aimed at ending Yemen’s civil war continue.

U.N. deputy spokesman Farhan Haq said Thursday that envoy Martin Griffiths plans to visit Yemen’s capital, Sanaa, starting Saturday.

Griffiths intends to meet with leaders of the Iran-aligned Houthi rebels, then go to Saudi Arabia to consult with Yemeni President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi in Riyadh.

The Houthis seized Sanaa in 2014. A Saudi-led coalition allied with the government has been fighting the Houthis since 2015.

Last month, the warring sides agreed to a cease-fire in Hodeida, a crucial port for delivering humanitarian aid. They also agreed to a prisoner exchange and other measures that could help foster a political settlement.