The Saudi-led alliance fighting Yemen’s Houthi rebels has announced a ceasefire from Wednesday.

The coalition said that it would observe a ceasefire to create propitious conditions needed for successful consultations and a favourable environment for the Holy Month of Ramadan to make peace, and achieve security and stability in Yemen.

The UN had earlier called for a cessation of hostilities during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, which begins at the start of April.

In mid-March, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) invited the parties to the conflict to talks in Riyadh.

The week-long consultations was due to start on March 29 but the Houthis declined to participate.

The civil war in Yemen is entering its eighth year.

It has triggered the world’s worst humanitarian crisis in the severely impoverished country, UN figures show.

Saudi Arabia and its allies have been fighting alongside the government in Yemen against Iran-backed Houthis since 2015, seeking to reduce Tehran’s influence.

The Houthi rebels control large parts of the north, including Sana’a.

So far, all diplomatic efforts to resolve the conflict have failed.

Earlier on March 25, Houthi missile and drone attacks on the kingdom led to fire breaking out at an oil facility near the Formula One circuit in Jeddah.

The coalition responded with counter-attacks.
A day later, the Houthi rebels offered a three-day unilateral ceasefire, suspending their attacks.

A senior rebel official said on March 26, that a permanent ceasefire was possible if allied forces withdrew from Yemen.