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UK to urge Security Council action over Yemen

Britain will use "all its influence to push for such an approach," he added, saying there was "a small but real chance that a cessation of hostilities could alleviate the suffering of the Yemeni people."

Medics treat a Yemeni child who was injured in a reported air strike at an emergency clinic in the Iran-backed Huthi rebels' stronghold province of Saada on 8 August 2018. Picture: AFP

LONDON – Britain on Monday announced that it was urging UN Security Council partners to act over the humanitarian crisis in Yemen, saying there now "appears to be a window" for a peace deal.

Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt agreed with the UN's Yemen envoy Martin Griffiths "that the time was right for the Council to act to bolster the UN led process," according to a Foreign Office statement.

"For too long in the Yemen conflict both sides have believed a military solution is possible with catastrophic consequences for the people," said Hunt.

"Now for the first time there appears to be a window in which both sides can be encouraged to come to the table, stop the killing and find a political solution that is the only long term way out of disaster."

Britain will use "all its influence to push for such an approach," he added, saying there was "a small but real chance that a cessation of hostilities could alleviate the suffering of the Yemeni people."

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Friday called for a halt to violence in Yemen to pull the country back from a "precipice" and build momentum toward talks on ending the war.

Conflict-ravaged Yemen has become a "living hell" for children with thousands dying every year from malnutrition and easily preventable diseases, a top UN official said Sunday.

According to Unicef, 1.8 million Yemeni children under the age of five suffer from acute malnutrition, and the lives of 400,000 severely affected children are under threat.