U.N. warns millions at risk in Yemen, urges Saudi coalition to open ports

U.N. warns millions at risk in Yemen, urges Saudi coalition to open ports
From Reuters - November 14, 2017

GENEVA (Reuters) - The U.N. aid coordinator called on the Saudi-led coalition to open all Yemens seaports urgently on Tuesday, saying millions of lives were at risk.

The Saudi-led coalition fighting Yemens Houthi movement said last week it had closed all air, land and seaports in Yemen to stem what it said was the flow of arms to the Houthis from Iran.

We have some 21 million people needing assistance and seven million of those are in famine-like conditions and rely completely on food aid, U.N. humanitarian coordinator for Yemen Jamie McGoldrick said.

The continued closure by the Saudi-led coalition of critical seaports and airports is aggravating an already dire humanitarian situation. I think it poses a critical threat to the lives of millions who are already struggling to survive.

McGoldrick was speaking to reporters in Geneva by phone from Amman, because he said flights into Sanaa were blocked.

The humanitarian impact of what is happening right now is unimaginable, he said.

The Saudi-led coalition has said it will keep Hodeidah port closed until a U.N. verification programme is reviewed to ensure no weapons reach the Houthis.

Iran denies arming the Houthis and blames the two-and-a-half-year conflict in Yemen on Riyadh.


Continue reading at Reuters »