UN sponsored Yemen talks to resume in Geneva next week
A Yemeni girl holds a placard during a protest in the capital Sanaa against the Saudi-led military operations, on June 6, 2015. The placard reads in Arabic: "Don't kill childhood in Yemen". (AFP/Mohammed Huwais)
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The UN-facilitated peace talks between Yemen's warring parties will resume next week in Geneva, the New York-based body has revealed.
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon welcomed the decisions by Yemen's exiled President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi and Shia Houthi rebels, who control the capital Sanaa, to attend the talks scheduled for June 14.
"[Ban] reiterates his urgent call on all Yemeni parties to engage in these consultations in good faith and without pre-conditions in the interest of all Yemeni people,” according to a UN statement on Saturday.
The negotiations will mark the most significant effort to end the weeks-long fighting in Yemen, where a Saudi Arabia-led coalition launched a military operation in late March against Houthi forces which had overran Sanaa before extending their influence to other parts of the country.
The talks were originally set for May 28, but were postponed after Hadi declined to participate, citing the Houthis' refusal to implement a UN Security Council resolution that demanded their withdrawal from all government institutions.
Ban also called for a renewed humanitarian truce to allow much-needed aid to reach more than 20 million Yemenis.
"Such assistance is of paramount and pressing importance because the suffering of the Yemeni population, as a result of the continued conflict, is increasing dramatically", he said.
The UN estimates more than 2,200 people have been killed and more than a million internally displaced in Yemen since March 19.