Though the warring factions agreed on several issues in Sweden, Yemenis are still waiting to see if the agreement comes into effect.
TAIZ, Yemen — A ceasefire in Hodeidah will begin tomorrow morning as the first step in implementing the peace talks' outcomes between Yemen's warring sides in Sweden.
This is not the first ceasefire agreed between the two sides. Several ceasefires have been violated in the first days of their implementation over the last three years.
Yemenis do not believe in agreements on paper, because they have yet to see any tangible effects from them.
Saeed al-A'arag lives in a shaking tent with three other family members in a camp for internally displaced persons in the Taiz' al-Safia area. He does not know the details of the peace talks, but he is well aware about the long lasting impact of the war. His house was destroyed in the country's Mawza district.
A'arag heard from others that the Houthis and the Saudi-backed government led by
Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi have finally agreed to a ceasefire. He was also told that if the conflict will end, he can return to his village and resume farming tomatoes.
"I have already heard more than one time during the last three years that battles will stop and I can return to my home. But these were all rumours and nothing was true," A'arag told TRT World. "I cannot trust the warring sides and I will not believe the news until I return to my house."
In the last session of the peace talks in Sweden on December 13, the two sides also agreed on the withdrawal of troops from Hodeidah, the contested Red Sea port city.
A prisoners’ swap deal and opening roads to the besieged city of Taiz were also part of the deal.
Amin Adel works as a bus driver between Taiz and Sana'a. He said people don’t care about the agreements on paper, they want to see them implemented on the ground.
"If the peace talks were successful, people should be able to see the results from day one," Adel told TRT World.
Though Adel was well aware about the content of the peace negotiations and what is at stake, many Yemenis are either unaware of this development or they have lost hope in such endeavours.
We asked Anwer Abdullah, a vegetable seller in Taiz's Jamal Street, if he was hopeful about the peace talks in Sweden. I response he said: "I do not know what you mean. Do you mean solutions will come from the West?"
Such pessimistic approach toward the talks isn't just limited to civilians. Several international aid organisations have also grown equally sceptical toward the prospect of peace.
Abdikadir Mohamud, Mercy Corps Country Director in Yemen, said: "While we are hopeful that the ceasefire agreement regarding the Hodeidah port will benefit the Yemeni people, this is just a first step."
"The measure of the agreement will be taken in action on the ground, not words in a conference room. We need lifesaving supplies to reach the millions of people in need, and we need safe passage for the humanitarians who will distribute them,” he said.
Mohamud said a ceasefire is not enough, given the grave humanitarian crisis the country has slipped into. He wants the Saudi-backed Hadi government to "reopen all the ports, facilitate humanitarian responses, and take measures to stabilise the Yemeni economy."