UN Welcomes Temporary Halt in Yemen Operations

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RIYADH, March 30 (Reuters) - United Nations and United States envoys on Wednesday welcomed unilateral truce moves by Yemen's warring sides as encouraging steps, while stressing the need for a more comprehensive ceasefire that would help alleviate a dire humanitarian crisis.

The Saudi-led coalition fighting Yemen's Houthis had said it would temporarily halt military operations from Wednesday after the Iran-aligned group this week declared a three-day cessation of cross-border attacks and ground offensives in Yemen.

As part of efforts to end the seven-year-old war that has killed tens of thousands and pushed millions into hunger, the initiatives followed a U.N. call for a truce during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan that starts this week.

U.N. special envoy Hans Grundberg and U.S. special envoy Tim Lenderking, speaking at a gathering of allied Yemeni factions in Riyadh on Wednesday, said the unilateral announcements were a step in the right direction.