A political solution through U.N.-brokered negotiations is needed to resolve the conflict in Yemen, U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said Tuesday as he made his first trip in the role to Saudi Arabia.

At least 10,000 people have been killed and more than 3 million displaced in the war, now in its third year. Millions of people are also struggling to feed themselves.

"It has gone on for a long time, we see Iranian supplied missiles being fired by the Houthis into Saudi Arabia and this is something, with the number of innocent people dying inside Yemen, it has simply got to be brought to an end," Mattis told reporters on his way to Riyadh.

"We will work with our allies, with our partners to try to get it to the U.N.-brokered negotiating table," Mattis said.

He gave no details on what additional support, if any, the United States would provide to the Saudi-led coalition. But he said he was looking to deepen and broaden the relationship between the two countries on the trip.

Mattis is expected to meet senior Saudi officials including King Salman and Deputy Crown Prince and Defense Minister Mohammed bin Salman.

Source: National News Agency