In order to “alleviate the suffering” of Yemeni people, Saudi King Salman has issued a directive to transfer $2 billions to Yemen’s Central Bank. This action would help Yemen’s economic and financial situation by bolstering the Yemeni riyal. The transfer, that brings the total amount of Saudi financial aid to the Yemen’s central Bank to $3 billion, is directed to ameliorate the living condition of the civil population. By official statement, this contribution will help the country to “cope with economic burdens resulting from the crimes and violations committed by Iranian-backed Houthi militias”. Indeed, Houthi rebels are accused of looting the state, taking control of government revenues, including those generated from oil and its derivatives. Their actions throughout the country are the vector of misery and destruction, thus damaging the lives of Yemenis for several years ahead. Doing so, Saudi Arabia has also reaffirmed the support for the Yemeni Government and stated that the Kingdom will continue to assist Yemen in its efforts to restore security and stability. Meanwhile Yemen’s president Hadi extended his thanks to Saudi Arabia’s King for the generous gesture to alleviate the suffering of the Yemeni people.
The Houthi forces destroyed several armored vehicles belonging to the United Arab Emirates-backed Southern Resistance group in western Yemen this past weekend. According to the Houthi forces’ official media wing, their fighters targeted and destroyed at least three armored vehicles belonging to the resistance group inside Ta’iz Governorate town of Al-Hamli.
After the international pressing orchestrated by international organisations over Saudi Arabia, to lift the blockade on Yemenite ports in order to stop the ongoing humanitarian disaster, it seems that nothing has changed. Surprisingly, there is no indication of aid or commerce coming into Yemen through the key port of Hodeidah, in spite of the Saudi pledge to stop the blockade for a month from the 20th of December. Two weeks after the announcements, the port remains empty. No merchants or reliefs vessels bringing first-necessity supplies were seen anchored at its harbour. The port manager declares that the blockade is still in effect. It is useful to underline that Yemen depends on imports, about 90% of its needs are from imports. Yemen, the poorer country of the Middle East, is struck by one of the world worst humanitarian disaster. Over 75% of Yemenite’s 27 million population, including 11.3 million children, are in dire need of humanitarian aid, as the UN said ten days after Saudis had supposedly lifted the blockade. It is estimated that over 60% of Yemenis are on the brink of starvation. The representatives of humanitarian and relief agencies emphasized the importance of lifting the blockade immediately. For them, in order to really demonstrate the willingness to put an end to the humanitarian disaster, the port of Hodeidah must be open all-year long to commercial and reliefs shipments, without conditions or timeline to that.
In a post on his official Twitter account, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif highlighted Washington’s complicity in war crimes committed in Yemen against Yemeni people, saying that since the beginning of the war, “the US has sold weapons enabling its allies to kill civilians and impose famine”. Zarif made the remarks in response to US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley, who claimed that the Islamic Republic has supplied Yemen with ballistic missiles. In fact, on Thursday, during her press conference, Haley appeared standing before parts of a ballistic missile that she claimed Iran delivered to Houthis in Yemen, who then fired it at the Riyadh airport in Saudi Arabia last month. Also Iran’s Ambassador to the United Nations Gholam Ali Khoshroo in a statement issued on Thursday rejected Haley’s claim as “baseless” and said the accusations are aimed at covering up the Saudi war crimes in Yemen with the US complicity. Yemen’s defenseless people have been under massive attacks by coalition led by the Saud regime attacked for nearly three years, but Riyadh has reached none of its objectives in Yemen so far. Over 14,000 Yemenis, including thousands of women and children, have lost their lives in the deadly military campaign.
The humanitarian flights to Sana’a International Airport were resumed after they stopped on November 06 due to the closure of all Yemeni ports by the Saudi-led aggression alliance. Director General of Sana’a International Airport Khalid Al-Shayef told Saba that the airport received Wednesday two planes; the first one is belonging to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) carrying humanitarian aid and a number of ICRC staff, and a Russian plane carrying the new diplomatic crew of the Embassy of the Russian Federation in Sana’a. Al-Shayef pointed out that the two planes landed with ease and were contacted since they entered the airspace until they arrived at Sana’a airport. He confirmed the readiness of Sana’a International Airport to receive all flights in accordance with international laws and the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).
The Yemeni Vice President General Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar has reaffirmed that the “Houthi party represents Iran’s claws in Yemen, the Arabian Peninsula and the region”. Ahmar also said that Yemenis cannot target Mekkah or Riyadh “the nation’s cradle”. The general made this statement during his visit with the Saudi-led Arab coalition in Ma’rib the Nahem front east of Sanaa. Meanwhile, the vice president noted that all areas bordering Sanaa were not a platform for the Houthis and will never be. At this point Ahmar called on the tribe members of these areas to actively participate in the “liberation battle”. Also, Ahmar directed a message to the children of Sanaa, the free members of the armed forces, the General People’s Congress (headed by ousted Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh) and all political and social elements. In his message, Ahmar demanded these sides to “be warned and remain alert from the Houthi’s backstabbing” whom he said, “does not exclude any one and targets houses, camps, schools and places of worship”.
According to prominent humanitarian organisation Save the Children, no less than 130 children die every single day in Yemen due to malnutrition and preventable disease caused by the Saudi-led near total blockade of the country. The organisation furthermore warned that the situation will deteriorate even further if the lockdown of Yemen isn’t immediately lifted. The warning comes less than two weeks after Saudi Arabia announced that it would further restrict all access to Yemen by sea, air and land. The increased lockdown comes after a Yemeni missile was fired at Riyadh in retaliation for the two-year long military campaign the Saudi kingdom has been waging on its southern neighbour. Along with humanitarian organisations, three UN agencies, the World Food Programme, UNICEF and the WHO, have also made an official plea to Saudi Arabia to lift its blockade of Yemen, stating that unless Riyadh complies, “untold thousands of innocent victims, among them many children, will die”.
A suicide car bomb targeted a camp used by security forces in the al-Mansoura district in Yemen’s port city of Aden. A bombing hit a security post in Yemen’s government bastion of Aden on Tuesday, killing and wounding several people, witnesses and police sources said. Witnesses in the southern Aden province told AFP they heard a loud explosion followed by gunfire at the main office of UAE-trained security forces in charge of guarding state-owned facilities. They said 10 people had been killed in the attack and more wounded. The number of casualties could not be confirmed by government sources. It was not immediately clear how the bombing was carried out. One police source said it appeared that explosives in a vehicle had been remotely detonated during the attack. Another said there had been a suicide bomber inside the car. The Zayed bin Sultan mosque, which is located near the security office and funded by the UAE, was also damaged in the attack.
According to medical sources in Taiz, southwestern Yemen, ten people including children, were wounded by bombings shot by the Houthi and Saleh’s militia, targeting the villages west of the city. The sources pointed out that among the injured were four children, some are seriously wounded, as a result of bombing residential villages in Al-Asharouh and Beni Bakari, Azlet Elyaman and Kuweyha located in the western area of Jabal Habashi, west of the city of Taiz. In the same district, the coup militias forced 65 families from the lower Al Quoz village to leave their homes by force at gunpoint. Families of forcibly displaced persons reported that Houthi militias had spread mines in the village to force the residents out. The Center for Human Rights in Taiz (non-governmental) condemned the systematic forced displacement of the Houthi and Saleh’s militias against the besieged Yemeni people. It also condemned the act of implanting thousands of mines in the roads used by unarmed citizens in these villages describing the act as an atrocious war crime.
The top US Air Force officials in the Mideast says that the ballistic missile fired by Yemeni rebels that targeted the Saudi capital was from Iran and bore “Iranian markings”. Harrigian said authorities were investigating how the missile was smuggled into Yemen amid a Saudi-led coalition controlling the country’s airspace, ports and borders. Previously, the White House has condemned the missile attack by Yemen’s Houthi militias on Saudi Arabia on 4 November, and said Iran “enabled” the attacks which had threatened stability in the Middle East. Saudi Arabia has said that the ballistic missile had a range of more than 900 km and was made in Iran, describing that attack as an “act of war”. The Yemeni rebels said they hit Riyadh’s King Khalid International Airport to the north of Riyadh with a Burkan-2H ballistic missile and released a video that purportedly showed the missile being launched at night. The Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported that air defenses had intercepted the missile before it hit the airport and its remnants landed in an uninhabited area north of the capital.