Yemen militia ‘blocking aid to Hodeidah’ says Saudi KSrelief

File photo showing Dr Abdullah Alrabiah the head of KSrelief with the regional head of UNICEF in MENA. (Photo courtesy KSrelief)
Updated 13 June 2018
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Yemen militia ‘blocking aid to Hodeidah’ says Saudi KSrelief

  • KSrelief Dr Al-Rabiah said that the relief of the Yemeni people is a priority for the coalition.
  • KSRelief will mount a “humanitarian aid bridge using land, air and sea to deliver urgent food and subsistence material for the people of Hodeidah.

Riyadh: Yemenis in the port city of Hodeidah are being denied humanitarian aid by the Houthi militia, Dr. Abdullah AlRabiah, head of the King Salman Center for Relief and Humanitarian Aid (KSRelief), has warned. 

Saudi-led coalition forces on Wednesday launched an air, sea and land assault to recapture Hodeidah from the rebel group.

Al-Rabiah said that the relief of the Yemeni people is a priority for the coalition, which would do all it could to deliver humanitarian aid despite attempts by the Houthi militia to halt distribution across the country.

In a joint press conference on Wednesday with UAE Minister for International Cooperation Reem Al-Hashemi, the relief agency head said that Iran-backed Houthi militia had stopped aid reaching the people of Hodeidah.

KSRelief will mount a “humanitarian aid bridge using land, air and sea to deliver urgent food and subsistence material for the people of Hodeidah,” Al-Rabiah said. He urged all relief organizations to help KSRelief continue aid deliveries through the port. 


Hodeidah offensive: Coalition forces seize weapons supplied by Iran to Houthis

Updated 53 min 39 sec ago
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Hodeidah offensive: Coalition forces seize weapons supplied by Iran to Houthis

  • The arsenal included drones, a sniper rifle, roadside bombs disguised as rocks and even a “drone boat” which had been filled with explosives that failed to detonate.
  • Equipment used to produce and load fuel for rockets that target Saudi Arabia contained Iranian labels.

JEDDAH: Saudi-led coalition officials on Tuesday displayed weapons and explosives supplied by Iran to Houthi militias in the Yemeni port city of Hodeidah. 

The arsenal included drones, a sniper rifle, roadside bombs disguised as rocks and even a “drone boat” which had been filled with explosives that failed to detonate.

Equipment used to produce and load fuel for rockets that target Saudi Arabia contained Iranian labels. The weapons were captured on the battlefield in Hodeidah and displayed at a military base in the UAE. 

“Unsurprisingly, there are advanced military components in the Houthi militias’ hands,” said Talal Al-Teneiji, an official at the UAE Foreign Ministry.

“We took time to inspect and disassemble these to figure out the source ... and we can say that these elements are military-grade materials imported from Iran to the Houthi militias.”

As the week-long offensive in Hodeidah intensified on Tuesday, coalition forces consolidated their grip on the city’s airport and there was new fighting on the main coast road leading to the city center, with Apache helicopters providing air support to the coalition. 

“We can hear the sounds of artillery, mortars and sporadic machinegun fire. The Houthis have been using tanks,” one civilian on the coastal strip said. 

“Water has been cut off to many of the areas near the corniche area because the Houthis have dug trenches and closed water pipes.”

At the airport, which the coalition has controlled since Saturday, their forces stormed the main compound and took full command.

UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash said: “We are waiting for the Houthis to realize the sort of military and psychological blow that they got with the airport ... we are giving them time to decide if they want to save the city ... and pull out.”

Oubai Shahbandar, a strategic communications adviser, told Arab News that “without the sea and airport of Hodeidah, the Houthi militia has effectively lost the war.”

They should agree to UN-hosted peace talks and not prolong the fighting. “The tide in this conflict has clearly turned in favor of the Arab coalition and the welfare of the Yemeni people ought to be paramount,” he said.