“Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has threatened in the past to take the Saudi fight against Tehran to Iranian territory”
information posted on social media appear to corroborate this, showing that coalition forces and their allies are advancing, albeit with resistance, toward the city. Reported casualty figures for Saudi airstrikes are higher than they have been for previous Saudi attacks. On November 4, Yemen’s official Saba news agency also reported the coalition cut off the Houthis’ main supply line to Hodeida, which a Houthi spokesperson denied.
We would expect to see a new offensive launched right before another round of serious negotiations. During such talks, parties often try to improve their bargaining positions by acquiring more territory. And it’s hard to believe that the timing of this offensive – beginning just three days before sanctions on Iran came into effect and around the time that the U.S. called for a cease-fire in Yemen – is a coincidence.
Another sign that more serious talks may be ahead came from Pakistan. Following his recent visit to Saudi Arabia, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan stated that Pakistan is willing to act as a mediator between Saudi Arabia and Iran, later saying that informal talks have already begun. Iran, for its part, said it would welcome Pakistan as a mediator. These statements, combined with the challenges facing Iran and the intensifying offensive around Hodeida, may indicate that the chances for a settlement are improving.