Sunday, 19 November, 2017

Saudi Arabia to reopen Yemen's air and seaports within next 24 hours

Saudis Will Open Aid Deliveries to Some 'Loyal' Yemen Ports Yemen rebels vow escalation as Saudis look to relax blockade
Kenny Thornton | 15 November, 2017, 11:11

Hedile noted the first flight carrying 218 passengers took off today.

There was worldwide outcry last week when Saudi Arabia blockaded the country's ports after a missile was sacked towards its territory by the Houthi rebels.

We heard [from the Saudis] that Aden and Mukalla ports are now open - but this is not enough.

Zarif's plan calls for "a ceasefire and an immediate end to all military operations, unimpeded urgent humanitarian and medical assistance to the people of Yemen, resumption of Yemeni-led and Yemeni-owned national dialogue, with the participation of the representatives of all political parties and social groups, and establishment of an inclusive national unity government".

Muhrez said more importantly, humanitarian aid can not replace commercial shipments.

After the blockade by the Saudi-led coalition, the United Nations has warned that already catastrophic humanitarian crisis in Yemen was worsening each day as the country 90% depends on exports for daily necessities.

Saudis Will Open Aid Deliveries to Some 'Loyal' Yemen Ports

The Houthis control most of the north, including Sanaa and its worldwide airport, while the Saudi-led coalition dominates the airspace.

However, Mr McGoldrick said there was "no indication" yet of the blockade being lifted. As quoted by The Hindu, the Saudi mission statement hopes that the team from the United Nations will help in preventing "the smuggling of weapons, ammunitions, missile parts and cash that are regularly being supplied by Iran and Iranian accomplices to the Houthi rebels".

Yemen used to import about 70 percent of its daily needs before the blockade, but since the start of the siege, food and medicine are in short supply, with cooking gas prices having surged by around 100 percent and fuel unavailable at most gas stations.

Saudi Arabia and its allies intervened in neighbouring Yemen in March 2015 to push back the rebels who control the capital Sanaa, in an attempt to restore the Hadi government to power.

Meanwhile, Aden's port - which is controlled by allies of Saudi Arabia - does not have the capacity, according to the United Nations, to handle the necessary volume of humanitarian cargo and would mean hazardous cross-line deliveries.

Some 2,000 of those deaths were the result of a cholera epidemic that swept rebel-held areas this summer, with half a million people infected.

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