Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia — Saudi Arabia and the U.S. on Thursday announced a five-day humanitarian cease-fire in the Yemen conflict — contingent upon agreement from Iran-linked Houthi rebels to stop fighting as well.

The Gulf Kingdom has been leading an Arab coalition in a bombing campaign on its neighbor since the Shiite Houthis attempted to take power in March.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry told a press conference in Riyadh that the "humanitarian pause" would not start immediately but would mean no bombing, shooting or strategic movement of troops.

The "cease-fire is conditioned on the Houthis agreeing to live by these same commitments," Kerry explained, adding that neither the Saudis nor Houthis should look to "exploit the humanitarian pause."

The secretary of state also said the U.S. would double its efforts to stop arm flows into Yemen per a U.N. resolution on the subject.

Earlier on Thursday, Kerry met exiled Yemeni President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, who fled to Saudi Arabia in March after the Houthi advance.

— Abigail Williams and Alexander Smith