Below are the takeaways from the week:
- Ongoing negotiations between Iran and Europe regarding the Yemeni civil war are unlikely to extend to other contentious issues such as Iran’s ballistic missile program and Iranian support for proxies in Iraq and Syria. The Iranian regime may leverage its influence over Yemen’s al Houthi movement to broker a ceasefire in order to mollify European concerns over Iran’s regional activities.
- The UN-led peace process in Libya may gain new momentum following a French-brokered declaration but still faces challenges from political spoilers and militias. Four key leaders agreed to a series of principles and a timeline for national elections at a summit in Paris. Other factions objected to or boycotted the summit, however, raising the possibility of continued deadlock if more powerbrokers do not buy into the new framework.
- Emirati-backed forces are positioning for an offensive on al Hudaydah port. Emirati-backed forces advanced roughly 30 miles north along Yemen’s Red Sea coast in five days. The offensive’s rapid progress toward the port may indicate that the al Houthi movement is under significant pressure. Emirati-backed forces must secure additional territory before beginning an offensive on al Hudaydah, the primary port of entry for humanitarian and commercial imports.