UN-led peace talks adjourn; additional negotiations scheduled to begin in mid January
Humanitarian organizations increase operations during the ceasefire despite numerous violations
Displacement in Yemen increases, with more than 2.5 million IDPs countrywide
UN-sponsored peace negotiations between Republic of Yemen Government (RoYG) officials, Al Houthi leadership, and other stakeholders began in Biel, Switzerland, on December 15 and concluded on December 21 with UN Special Envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed announcing another round of talks scheduled to begin January 14. According to the UN, the parties identified a framework for negotiations to move toward a comprehensive settlement and defined a set of confidence-building measures related to prisoner releases, social services, and humanitarian access and assistance. The ceasefire between the RoYG, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA)-led Coalition, and Al Houthi and allied forces that accompanied the talks experienced numerous and widespread violations. However, humanitarian organizations maintained operations and provided assistance to vulnerable conflict-affected populations across many Yemeni governorates despite ongoing hostilities.
Given the importance of a cessation of hostilities to the success of peace negotiations, the Special Envoy scheduled the next round of talks for mid-January to allow time for preparatory negotiations in Yemen and the region to ensure the sustainability of and adherence to a ceasefire, according to the UN.
- Following the Special Envoy’s briefing to the UN Security Council on December 22, U.S. Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power also addressed the Council, emphasizing the importance of a de-escalation of hostilities and a lasting ceasefire. Ambassador Power reiterated that all parties to the conflict must fully adhere to international humanitarian law and urged all sides to refrain from indiscriminate attacks against civilians.