Group: Pledge to ease Yemen blockade falls short

24 November, 2017, 01:28 | Author: Hope Soto
  • Saudi Arabia eases blockade, reopens Yemen's Hudaydah port

The coalition imposed a total blockade of Yemen's ports and airports two days after the Houthis fired a missile at Saudi Arabia on Nov 4.

The coalition allowed the resumption of global commercial flights and opened Aden port last week, but it said the main aid route into the country (Hodeidah) would stay closed until it was "satisfied" its Houthi opponents could not use it to bring in weapons.

The coalition imposed a blockade November 6, after rebels fired a missile at the Saudi capital.

The International Rescue Committee says a partial reopening of ports will ease the flow of humanitarian aid, but "will still leave the population of Yemen in a worse situation than they were two weeks ago before the blockade started".

Haq said the "monitoring these developments and we're trying to see whether that actually takes place on the ground".

Aid group Save the Children welcomed the coalition's announcement but warned that it was "nowhere near enough to avert a potential starvation in Yemen".

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Yemen's largest airport in the capital of Sanaa will reopen to United Nations aircraft, while the Red Sea port of Hodeida will be able to once again receive urgent humanitarian aid, the Saudi-led coalition said on Wednesday.

The Saudi authorities announced that the blockades on rebel-held Hodeida port and Sana'a airport were being lifted for urgent humanitarian supplies from noon local time.

The coalition sys the United Nations and worldwide relief groups have demanded the coalition allow full access to hubs in Yemen so that humanitarian aid can reach those that desperately need it.

The blockade has left five cities in Yemen without clean water as fuel shortages increase and pumping stations shut down.

"It is good news", said Jamie McGoldrick, the United Nations humanitarian chief for Yemen. The missile was shot down, but it was the farthest a projectile fired by Yemen's Shiite rebels, also known as the Houthis, had travelled into the kingdom. The two ports have served as the only lifeline for northern Yemen, where most of the country's 27 million people live. "All sea and air ports must be fully reopened immediately to both humanitarian and commercial access to save millions of innocent Yemeni people".



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