A Yemeni army officer was killed in clashes with Iran-backed Houthis as the warring sides agreed to renew a two-month truce expiring on Tuesday.
Local media reports and officials said that Abdullah Al-Akara Al-Jahami, a military leader on the Marib battlefield and the security chief of Serwah district in Marib province, was killed outside the city of Marib while pushing back a Houthi attack.
“This truce extension includes a commitment from the parties to intensify negotiations to reach an expanded truce agreement as soon as possible,” special envoy for Yemen Hans Grundberg said in a statement.
“In the coming weeks, I will intensify my engagements with the parties to ensure the full implementation of all the parties’ obligations in the truce,” Grundberg added.
The latest escalation in fighting came as a group of Omani mediators left Sanaa after meeting the Houthi movement’s leader, Abdul Malik Al-Houthi, and the head of the Supreme Political Council, Mahdi Al-Mashat.
According to the militia, talks focused on reinforcing the humanitarian and military truce, paying public servants and proposals for ending the war, but there was no mention of any significant outcome.
Local and international aid organizations, as well as foreign diplomats, said that the level of violence has fallen significantly in Yemen during the truce, as thousands of Yemenis traveled on commercial flights from Houthi-held Sanaa to Cairo and Amman.
Fuel ships that docked at Hodeidah port delivered urgently needed supplies to hospitals and businesses in Houthi-controlled areas.
Meanwhile, the Yemeni Landmine Monitor said that since April 2, the first day of the truce, 168 civilians have been killed or wounded by land mines or unexploded ordnance planted by the militia.
Fifty-seven civilians, including 28 children and four women, have been killed and 111, including 47 children and eight women, wounded by Houthi land mines in the past four months, mainly in Hodeidah, Taiz, Hajjah, Al-Bayda, Saada and other areas.
Thousands of mines planted by the Houthis have also threatened farms, ruined or damaged properties, and prevented thousands of internally displaced people from returning to their homes.