Houthi rebels and Saudi-backed forces exchanged heavy weapons fire in Al-Hudaydah late (local time) on Sunday, March 24, into the morning of Monday, March 25. The clashes came as the UN released a plan for both forces to withdraw from the port city and amid a ceasefire which came into effect on December 18, 2018. Fighting between the sides is expected to continue over the near term in Al-Hudaydah despite these UN initiatives.
The March 24-25 clashes reportedly marked the most intense fighting in Al-Hudaydah since the UN-backed ceasefire came into effect over the city on December 18, 2018.
Yemen is engaged in a complex and deadly conflict, ongoing since Houthi rebels entered into a civil war with the Yemeni government, supported by a Saudi-led coalition, in 2015. The Saudi-led coalition has carried out thousands of airstrikes in Yemen since its intervention began. Hundreds of Yemeni civilians have been killed in the strikes, which have hit schools, hospitals, and markets, in addition to Houthi militant positions and personnel. In total, more than 10,000 Yemenis have died in the fighting and some 3 million have been displaced.
Due to poor security conditions, many Western governments advise their citizens against all travel to Yemen. Travel to the country should only be considered with proper security protocols in place. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel.
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