Yemen halts fighting in north

Campaign against Shia Houthi fighters is suspended to allow aid deliveries.

    The UN has said that more than 100,000 people have been displaced by the fighting [AFP]

    No time was given for the resumption of the military campaign and there was no response from the Houthi fighters.

    Hakhim Almasmari, editor-in-chief of the Yemen Post, said that clashes were still going on hours after the ceasefire was declared.

    "According to our sources, no ceasefire has taken place yet,” Almasmari told Al Jazeera.

    Displacement

    On Thursday, the Red Cross said that more than 25,000 people had registered as displaced in the northern provinces of Saada and Amran.

    In depth

     

    Video: Fierce fighting grips Yemen
      Profile: Yemen's Houthi fighters
      Inside story: Yemen's future

    "The dire humanitarian situation is hitting women and children especially hard," Daniel Gagnon, a Red Cross official working in Yemen, said.

    Other people are said to have fled as far as Sana'a, the capital in the south, more than 185km away.

    Aid agencies from the United Nations estimate that more than 100,000 people have been forced to flee their homes in total.

    Fighting reignited in the north last month and has continued primarily in Saada, on the Saudi Arabian border.

    Zaydi Shia Muslims are fighting for independence from a government which they say is corrupt and too close to Saudi Arabia, which is run by a Sunni Muslim royal family.

    Both sides have already rejected ceasefire offers from the other party.

    An offshoot of Shia Islam, Zaidis are a minority in mainly Sunni Yemen but form the majority community in the north, some of whom want a return to the imamate, which was overthrown in a 1962 coup.

    The conflict first began in 2004.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


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