Coalition declares successful end of Decisive Storm

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Updated 23 April 2015
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Coalition declares successful end of Decisive Storm

The Saudi-led international coalition declared Tuesday the end of its military campaign four weeks after launching airstrikes on the Houthi positions in Yemen, saying the militia’s threat to the Kingdom and its neighbors had been neutralized.
The coalition has “ended Operation Decisive Storm based on a request by the Yemeni government and President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi,” said its spokesman, Brig. Gen. Ahmad Al-Assiri.
However, he said the coalition would continue to impose a naval blockade on Yemen and target any movements by the Houthi forces.
A coalition statement said that the next phase of campaign titled “Operation Restoring Hope” was aimed at resuming the political process in Yemen, delivering aid and fighting terrorism in the country.
The Defense Ministry said in a statement that the airstrikes had managed “to successfully remove threats” to Saudi Arabia’s security and that of neighboring countries as the campaign was instrumental in destroying the militia’s ballistic missiles and other heavy weaponry.
Al-Assiri said the coalition would confront the military movement and operations of the Houthis and their allies and would not allow them to use smuggled weapons.
“We’ll also prevent the supply of weapons by land or air to the Houthis or the allies of ousted President Ali Abdullah Saleh,” he added.
The coalition will assist efforts for the evacuation of foreigners living in Yemen and distribution of medical and relief supplies among Yemenis in affected areas.
“Members of the coalition have reiterated their commitment to restore Yemen’s security and stability without any foreign interference,” the spokesman said.
He said the political process would be carried out on the basis of the Security Council Resolution 2216 and the GCC peace initiative for Yemen.
Hadi has thanked Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman and other leaders of the coalition for launching the operation, which, he said, was successful in realizing its objectives.
“It eliminated the capabilities of Houthis and their weapons, which had posed a threat to Yemen and its neighboring countries,” Hadi said in a message to King Salman.
The coalition has taken full control of the regional aerospace and waters to prevent supply of weapons to the Houthis, thus creating a suitable atmosphere for the legitimate Yemeni authorities to work.
Hadi said the history of Yemen and Arab world would record the Saudi-led Decisive Storm in golden letters for restoring his country’s legitimacy and giving hope for his people about the future.


Food trucks serve in holy places for first time

Updated 4 min 54 sec ago
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Food trucks serve in holy places for first time

  • About 45 food trucks were given permit to roam the holy places to offer food, drinks and desserts to pilgrims
  • Only Saudi citizens are allowed to work in these food trucks

 

MINA: Food trucks run by Saudi men and women have begun for the first time to serve food and drinks in the holy places.

This was after Deputy Makkah Gov. Prince Abdullah bin Bandar directed the Secretariat of the Holy Capital to allow local entrepreneurs to provide their services inside the holy places during the current Hajj season.

Unlike the old fixed food stalls, about 45 food trucks have begun roaming the holy places to offer food, drinks and desserts to pilgrims. They also serve ice cream to help people cope with the heat, as well as different kinds of sandwiches.

The Secretariat of the Holy Capital confirmed that all food trucks in Arafat comply with health requirements, with every food truck manager carrying health certificates that allow them to carry out their activities.

The Secretariat highlighted that only Saudi citizens are allowed to work in these food trucks.

Afaf Abdul Aziz, one of the women serving hot drinks, said that she was pleased that the governor of Makkah had allowed women to work in the holy places.

She added: “The job is hard but truly fun. I wanted to prove that Saudi women can work in all occupations and contribute to serving pilgrims.”

She said that most of her customers were Saudis or from Arabian Gulf countries, most of whom worked in providing Hajj services.

“I have seen many Saudi women working in hospitals, health care centers, and Tawafa establishments, which makes me content,” she said.

Arif Obaid said that he worked in a food truck and served hot drinks, especially coffee, highlighting that many security men visited his truck for all kinds of coffee, especially Arabic coffee, which is in high demand. “Most of our goods go to charity work targeting pilgrims,” he said.

The Secretariat of the Holy Capital has announced accepting applications from Saudi men and women who wish to practice this activity in the holy places during the current Hajj season according to a set of standards and controls. 

The most important of these is ensuring the safety of nourishments served to pilgrims and that the applicant has a health certificate proving that she/he is free of contagious or infectious diseases.