UNSC begins closed-door meeting on Yemen

United Nations: The UN Security Council on Saturday kicked off an emergency meeting behind closed doors on the current situation in Yemen, which has been suffering escalated violence over the past few weeks.

The meeting started around 11.20 a.m. at the request of the Russian mission to the UN in order to discuss an issue of humanitarian pause during coalition air strikes in Yemen, Xinhua quoted diplomats as saying.

The unscheduled meeting was the second by the council on Yemen over the past two weeks. On March 22, the 15-nation UN body had called an emergency meeting to discuss the volatile situation.

In response to the current situation on the ground, the UN has relocated its peace envoy for Yemen, Jamal Benomar, to Jordan and withdrew its last 13 foreign employees from the country, deputy UN spokesperson Farhan Haq said earlier.

The Yemeni crisis has become the focus of the ongoing Arab summit led by Egypt and attended by 20 Arab monarchs and presidents, including fleeing Yemeni President Abd-Rabbo Mansour Hadi, amid an ongoing Saudi Arabia-led military air strikes against targets of Shia Houthi rebels in Yemen.

Conflict in Yemen has killed more than 500 people over the past two weeks, Valerie Amos, the UN under-secretary-general for humanitarian affairs, said in a statement.