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Both sides in the U.N.-sponsored peace talks on Yemen have rejected an initial proposal for ending the fighting in the key port city of Hodeida.

According to reports, the proposal says members of the Saudi-led coalition would lay down their arms while the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels who control the city would retreat. A U.N. administration would temporarily take over.

Nearly all food and humanitarian aid come through Hodeida and the fighting is hindering deliveries.

U.N. envoy Martin Griffiths, who is overseeing the talks outside Stockholm, said the proposals are being revised.

The talks are also focused on stopping the fighting in Taiz, Yemen's third-largest city.

"If we are able to achieve progress on these two places, I think we will have done a great service to Yemen," Griffiths said Monday.

Yemeni and Houthi representatives say a deal on a prisoner swap is nearly finalized and will be overseen by the International Committee of the Red Cross.

These are the first substantial peace talks on Yemen since 2016. The fighting between the Houthis and Yemeni forces � backed by Saudi-led airstrikes � broke out in 2014 and has killed more than 10,000 people, including countless civilians.

The U.N. calls Yemen the world's worst humanitarian disaster. With the county on the brink of famine, nearly 80 percent of the population lacks food, clean water and proper medical care.

Source: Voice of America

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