John Kerry welcomes 72-hour ceasefire in Yemen


US Secretary of State John Kerry has welcomed the announcement of a three-day ceasefire due to come into force in the war-torn country on Wednesday midnight.

Kerry urged all sides of the conflict to halt military activities and help facilitate the delivery of humanitarian aid to Yemenis across the country.

“We ask the parties to take all steps necessary to advance the implementation of this cessation, call on them to sustain it, and strongly encourage its unconditional renewal,” Kerry said in a statement on Tuesday.

Kerry repeated an urgent appeal by United Nations special envoy for Yemen Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed to allow the delivery of humanitarian supplies and personnel throughout the country.

“The people of Yemen are depending on the full cooperation of all parties with the special envoy’s request,” Kerry said. “We note again that peaceful resolution of this conflict requires compromises and commitments by everyone.”

On Monday, Cheikh Ahmed announced a 72-hour ceasefire agreement, saying it was subject to renewal.

The ceasefire announcement has drawn a positive reaction from Iran which has called on Yemen’s warring sides to live up to its terms.

There have already been several attempts to halt the deadly Saudi aggression against Yemen, but such efforts have been stymied.

On Sunday, the US, UK and the UN called the warring sides in the conflict in Yemen to declare an immediate ceasefire. The call was made following a meeting between UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, Kerry and Cheikh Ahmed in London.

More than 10,000 people have died since Saudi Arabia launched a campaign to crush the Ansarullah movement and their allies and reinstate the resigned president, Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, a staunch ally of Riyadh.

The Saudi campaign has come under heavy criticism since an airstrike last week on a funeral in the Yemeni capital Sana’a killed at least 140 people.

The US military provides aerial refueling to Saudi bombers conducting airstrikes on Yemen. Washington has also been providing logistic and surveillance support to the kingdom in the bloody campaign.



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