Yemen's warring parties, Houthis allied to Iran and the officially recognised Yemeni government, have promised 'unconditional movement' of supplies and medical teams, WHO representative Ahmed Shadoul said.

Nineteen trucks pre-loaded with medical supplies were in Aden and Sanaa to start distribution across Yemen. By 1515 GMT, 14 of the trucks had been able to move and some of them had already reached their destinations, WHO spokesman Tarik Jasarevic said.

About 5 million children are to be vaccinated against crippling polio in a national immunisation campaign set for Dec 19-23, said Shadoul.

A ceasefire took effect in Yemen yesterday as parties to the civil war started UN sponsored peace talks in Switzerland in a new push to end months of fighting that have killed nearly 6,000 people, a UN spokesman said.

Some 150 metric tonnes of supplies in WHO's warehouse in Djibouti are expected to be shipped to Sanaa on Dec. 21 or 22, Shadoul said. From there, ships will take them to other Yemeni ports.

Outbreaks of measles and meningitis were feared. Acute malnutrition rates are high among Yemeni children and women, leaving them at risk of dying from such diseases.

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