NEW YORK: The UN Security Council on Tuesday unanimously authorized the deployment of up to 75 observers to Yemen's port city of Hodeidah for six months to monitor a ceasefire.
The Security Council last month authorized an advance monitoring team led by retired Dutch General Patrick Cammaert and asked UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to recommended a larger operation.
The initial deployment came after a deal reached during talks in Sweden between the Iran-backed Houthi militants and the internationally recognized government. The UN says the ceasefire that went into force on Dec.18 in Hodeida has been generally holding, but there have been delays in the redeployment of Hothi and some government forces from the city.
The British-drafted resolution adopted on Wednesday asks Guterres to "expeditiously" deploy his recommended larger operation, which will be known as the United Nations Mission to support the Hodeidah Agreement (UNMHA).
The resolution also "requests Member States, particularly neighboring States, to support the United Nations as required for the implementation of UNMHA's mandate."
Guterres described the mission as a "nimble presence" that will report on violations in Hodeida, which for months was the front line in the war after pro-government forces launched an offensive to capture it in June.
Hodeidah is the entry point for most of Yemen's commercial goods and aid supplies, and a lifeline for millions of Yemenis on the verge of starvation.