Saudi Arabia proposes ceasefire for Yemen

Saudi Arabia has proposed a nationwide ceasefire plan in the latest effort to bring peace to Yemen. The country has suffered six years of civil war, resulting in a serious humanitarian crisis.

The conflict began in 2015 between the Saudi-backed Yemeni government and the Iran-backed anti-government Houthis.

Saudi Arabia's foreign ministry announced the plan on Monday. It called on both warring sides for a ceasefire supervised by the United Nations and the opening of political negotiations.

However, the Houthis said the proposal provides nothing new. They insist that Saudi Arabia should first stop attacks and economic blockades on Houthi strongholds.

The fighting has intensified recently with the Houthis stepping up their offensive on oil-producing areas in central Yemen.

The United States administration under President Joe Biden has announced that the US will stop arms sales to Saudi Arabia and help to end the conflict in Yemen.

Principal Deputy Spokesperson of the US Department of State Jalina Porter said the US welcomes the Saudi proposal.

At a telephone news conference on Monday, she described the move as "one step in the right direction."

Porter added, "We call on all parties to commit seriously to a ceasefire immediately and engage in negotiations under the auspices of the UN."