Cranes arrive in Hodeidah to boost flow of food aid to Yemen

Cranes arrive in Hodeidah to boost flow of food aid to Yemen
This photo taken on November 07, 2017 shows a view of the Red Sea port of Hodeida. (AFP)
Updated 16 January 2018

Cranes arrive in Hodeidah to boost flow of food aid to Yemen

Cranes arrive in Hodeidah to boost flow of food aid to Yemen

DUBAI: Four mobile cranes have arrived in Houthi-controlled Hodeidah port, the United Nations said on Monday.
US Ambassador Nikki Haley said thanks to the efforts of US government agencies, the UN World Food Program (WFP), the Coalition, and aid organizations on the ground in Yemen, the ship carrying four US-supported cranes has successfully reached its destination at the port. These mobile cranes would improve the port’s capacity for offloading critical supplies, such as food and medicine, for the Yemeni people, she said.
“No one should ever have to live the way the people of Yemen are living. We thank our partners who helped us make this delivery possible so that we can help the tens of millions of innocent people who wake up each day facing hunger and disease. We call on all sides of the conflict to allow full access for humanitarian and commercial supplies, including fuel, by keeping the country’s ports open and allowing humanitarian agencies to deliver aid without interference,” Haley said.
The US-funded equipment will help to replace four giant cranes disabled by coalition warplanes in an August 2015 raid that drastically slowed the unloading of food, medicine and fuel needed by a population riven with hunger and disease.
The WFP said in a statement that a ship carrying the cranes it bought with funds from the United States Agency for International Development had arrived at Hodeidah port and were expected to be operational immediately.
“With each of the mobile cranes able to handle up to 60 tons, they will significantly boost the discharge of humanitarian cargo and other relief items,” the statement said.
The WFP said Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates facilitated the transfer of the cranes aboard the WFP-chartered vessel MV JUIST to Yemen.
The cranes are expected to help ease a humanitarian crisis. Hodeidah port handled around 70 percent of Yemen’s imports, including critically-needed food and humanitarian supplies.
The United Nations says that more than 22 million of Yemen’s 25 million population need humanitarian assistance, including 11.3 million who are in acute need — an increase of more than one million people since March 2017.