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UN special envoy to Yemen stepping down after peace efforts lost to fighting

FILE - Assistant UN Secretary-General, Special Adviser to Secretary-General on Yemen, Jamal Benomar, speaks to a reporter during an interview with The Associated Press in Sanaa, Yemen, in this Nov. 18, 2013 file photo. The U.N.'s special envoy to Yemen has stepped down after four years of efforts at a peaceful political transition in the Arab world's poorest country fell apart amid a Shiite rebel uprising and Saudi-led airstrikes. A U.N. statement late Wednesday April 15, 2015 said Jamal Benomar "has expressed an interest in moving on to another assignment" and that his successor will be named "in due course."  (AP Photo/Hani Mohammed, File)

FILE - Assistant UN Secretary-General, Special Adviser to Secretary-General on Yemen, Jamal Benomar, speaks to a reporter during an interview with The Associated Press in Sanaa, Yemen, in this Nov. 18, 2013 file photo. The U.N.'s special envoy to Yemen has stepped down after four years of efforts at a peaceful political transition in the Arab world's poorest country fell apart amid a Shiite rebel uprising and Saudi-led airstrikes. A U.N. statement late Wednesday April 15, 2015 said Jamal Benomar "has expressed an interest in moving on to another assignment" and that his successor will be named "in due course." (AP Photo/Hani Mohammed, File)  (The Associated Press)

The U.N. is announcing that its special envoy to Yemen is stepping down.

A statement late Wednesday says Jamal Benomar "has expressed an interest in moving on to another assignment" and that his successor will be named "in due course."

Benomar had come under criticism from some in the Middle East, particularly Saudi Arabia, as recent efforts to broker peace in the Arab world's poorest country showed little success.

Yemen is now under weeks of airstrikes by a Saudi-led coalition in an attempt to push back Shiite Houthi rebels who had caused the country's president to flee.

The statement says the U.N. will "spare no efforts to re-launch the peace process."