The war in Yemen pits the internationally recognised government-in-exile, supported by a Saudi-led coalition, against Iran-linked Houthi rebels. It has made Yemen the world's worst humanitarian crisis. Hudaida is a key port city and aid lifeline.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Thursday announced that Yemen's warring sides have agreed after week-long peace talks in Sweden to a province-wide cease-fire in Hudaida and a withdrawal of troops from the contested Red Sea port city.
Guterres thanked the Yemeni delegations for what he called "an important step" and "real progress toward future talks to end the conflict" and also said that the next round of talks is planned for the end of January.
The brutal four-year civil war, which pits the internationally recognised Yemeni government, supported by a Saudi-led coalition, against the Iran-backed rebels known as Houthis, has made Yemen the world's worst humanitarian crisis.
According to the United Nations, 22 of its 29 million people are in need of aid. The two sides have for months been locked in a stalemated fight over Hudaida.
Next round of talks expected in January
"This is just the beginning," Guterres said, speaking at the closing ceremony for the talks in the Swedish town of Rimbo. He thanked the Yemeni parties "for coming here to discuss a better future for Yemen."
The UN-sponsored talks had low expectations for halting the conflict immediately, but saw some progress with the agreement of a prisoner swap to include some 15,000 people at the start of the talks last week.
TRT World's Melinda Nucifora has more.
Both sides have said they sought to build on goodwill for future talks, although it was unclear how far they have come in agreeing on a draft agreement given to them a day earlier to consider by UN envoy Martin Griffiths.
Griffiths has said he wants to remove Hudaida from the conflict so that aid deliveries can operate freely.
On Wednesday, the UN raised expectations for progress in the talks saying that the UN envoy had given both sides a draft agreement for consideration.
The document consists of a set of proposals, including one for a political framework for a post-war Yemen, the reopening of the airport in the capital, Sanaa, and a proposal for Hudaida, a lifeline for millions of Yemenis dependent on international aid.
The government, which is supported by a Saudi-led coalition that has waged war against the Iran-backed Shia Houthis, said the next round of negotiations could take place as early as January.
The UN draft proposal was not released to the media. A draft document obtained by The Associated Press earlier this week showed an initial 16-point proposal to stop all fighting and have all troops withdraw to the city limits of the key port of Hudaida, and later from the surrounding province of the same name.
The war has pushed the Arab world's poorest country to the brink of famine and created the world's worst humanitarian crisis, with 22 of Yemen's 29 million people in need of aid, according to the United Nations. The two opposing sides have for months been locked in a stalemated fight over Hudaida.