ADEN, Yemen- Fresh clashes erupted on Monday night, between the Yemeni warring sides near key government facilities, in the strategic port city of Hodeidah, residents said.

Yemeni government forces were engaged in heavy armed confrontations with the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels, in the areas surrounding Hodeidah University and in the southern part of the city, according to residents.

They said, heavy weapons, including artillery, were used in the exchange of fire, causing huge blasts in the city, which had witnessed a temporary pause in fighting.

Mamun Mahjami, official spokesman of the pro-government Giants Brigades, said that, the Houthi rebels attacked and attempted to recapture some areas around Hodeidah University.

"Our forces (the Giants Brigades) dealt with the Houthis' armed attack and managed to foil it," Mahjami said.

Meanwhile, the government negotiating team in the UN-sponsored peace talks in Sweden started studying a new initiative, presented by the UN Envoy to Yemen, Martin Griffiths, about Hodeidah.

Sources said, the UN envoy's initiative suggests an internationally-monitored withdrawal of both Houthi rebels and the pro-government forces from all areas in Hodeidah.

However, a government official, based in Aden, said, the government rejected the initiative and insisted on full withdrawal of the Houthis from Hodeidah, while placing the management of the city's main airport under government control.

During a press conference, held in Sweden, Griffiths said, Hodeidah remains the most difficult issue for the ongoing discussions between the two warring factions.


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