Saudi Arabia says Yemen rebel fire kills 3 in kingdom

Frederick Owens
June 12, 2018

The spokesman of the Arab coalition Col Turki Al Malki stressed in a press conference on Monday the need to protect civilians and sustain the flow of aid.

Worldwide aid group Doctors Without Borders said Monday the Saudi-led coalition has attacked a cholera treatment center in the northern province of Hajja.

"We are doing everything we can through diplomatic channels to discourage an assault on Hodeidah".

Mr Guterres said his envoy Martin Griffiths was locked in "intense negotiations" with Yemen's rebel Houthis, Saudi Arabia and the UAE to find a "way to avoid the military confrontation in Al Hodeidah".

There have been reports that close USA ally the United Arab Emirates and local allies, tiring of the Huthi's ability to tax imports at Hodeida, is planning to capture the port.

Following the closed-door council meeting, Russian Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia, who is council president this month, called for de-escalation and said the top United Nations body would be "closely" following developments.

"There is a humanitarian cost to liberate #Hodeidah, but if the city remains under the control of the Iranian-backed #Houthis militias that's will result in a higher cost for sure". "We left it in his hands for the time being", Nebenzia told reporters.

The United Nations has warned that up to 250,000 people were at risk if the coalition moves ahead with an all-out offensive to take the port, which is a major entry point for commercial supplies and aid.

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The U.N. considers Yemen to be the world's worst humanitarian crisis, with more than 22.2 million people in need of assistance.

United Nations humanitarian chief Mark Lowcock told reporters today that 70 percent of Yemen's imported food, fuel, and medicines come through Hodeidah.

"We expect all parties to honor their commitments to work with the UN Office of the Special Envoy of the Secretary General for Yemen on this issue, support a political process to resolve this conflict, ensure humanitarian access to the Yemeni people, and map a stable political future for Yemen". "But we are also anxious about the humanitarian situation".

Griffiths is set to present on Monday a new peace plan for Yemen, but he has warned that military action could derail that effort.

The conflict in Yemen has left almost 10,000 people dead in what was already the Arab world's poorest country.

Government forces, backed by a Saudi-led coalition, have been advancing along the western coast in recent weeks as they battle the Iran-allied rebels, known as Houthis.

The conflict has left almost 10,000 people dead in Yemen, already the Arab world's poorest country.

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