July 2-July 9: UAE extends pause in Hudaydah offensive


UAE Foreign Minister Anwar Gargash announced an extension of the pause in the Hudaydah offensive, citing its support for UN Special Envoy Martin Griffith’s efforts to broker a deal that would prevent an assault. The parties still seem far apart, however, with the UAE expecting an unconditional withdrawal from the city and the Houthis stating they are negotiating to hand control of the port over to the UN.


46 detainees have been released from a UAE-controlled prison in southern Yemen. This is the third group of prisoners to be released since the discovery that torture and sexual abuse had been used in attempt to obtain confessions from detainees.


More than 500 Yemenis arrived on the South Korean island of Jeju this year under a policy that allows foreign nationals to enter without obtaining a visa in advance, and are hoping to be granted asylum. In response, anti-refugee protests have arisen, with some claiming “Citizens come first, we want safety.”

Martin Griffiths, the UN Special Envoy to Yemen, released a statement indicating that there was a "strong desire for peace" among the Houthis and their allies, while a Houthi negotiator stated that there had been no breakthrough in negotiations.

There are reports that coalition-backed forces have made territorial gains near the town of Zabid southeast of Hudaydah city [AR]. Anonymous coalition sources stated that operations in the area would continue to clear Houthi militias from the region and prevent them from attacking coalition-controlled territory on the west coast.

The Yemeni Journalists Syndicate monitored 100 cases of violations against journalists in the first half of 2018, with violations committed by all parties [AR].

Internet connection has reportedly slowed down in several governorates, including Aden and San’a, and been cut off in Hudaydah by the Houthis [AR].


The US Department of Homeland Security extended Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for 1,250 Yemenis living in the United States, but refused to re-designate TPS, preventing Yemenis who have arrived in the US over the last year from applying for TPS protections. (The Yemen Peace Project condemned this refusal to re-designate and further extend protections to other Yemeni immigrants.)

After a closed door briefing by UN Special Envoy Martin Griffiths, the UN Security Council issued a statement backing Griffiths' negotiation efforts, reiterating a belief that a political situation is the only way to end the conflict. The statement also called for Hudaydah and Saleef, two crucial ports, to remain open.

More than 121,000 residents have fled Hudaydah city and the surrounding areas since June 1st. An anonymous diplomatic source also informed The Washington Post that the Iran is increasing engagement with the international community on helping bring Yemen’s war to a close.


A suspected US drone strike targeted a vehicle traveling in Shabwa governorate, killing 7 suspected al-Qaeda members.

The war between US-backed Yemeni forces and al-Qaeda has intensified, while US air campaigns have escalated above Obama-era rates. Although al-Qaeda has lost about half the Yemeni territory it controlled in 2015, Yemeni forces recognise that the gains made against the group are precarious.


The Wall Street Journal suggests that Houthi tactics, including the widespread laying of landmines, the surprise use of drones, and ongoing counterattacks, have slowed the advance of the coalition-backed offensive against Hudaydah.

Coalition-backed Yemeni forces are continuing their push into Sa’dah governorate  in the Sa’dah governorate, with some sources stating that the coalition has taken full control of key mountain ranges in Kataf.


Reuters reports that the Hudaydah offensive is stalling, causing the coalition to lose leverage it was trying to maximize for negotiations with the Houthis.

Considering its prolonged involvement in the war in Yemen, the UAE has extended compulsory military service for men from 12 to 16 months.

The Yemeni government minister of interior, Ahmad al-Maysari, publicly called on the UAE to either hand over or shut down southern prisons where allegations of torture are rampant; the UAE has consistently denied being in control of these prisons.