The Yemeni army was involved in violent clashes with Houthi rebels and Saleh militias inside the strategic Khalid bin Walid camp in Taiz. The army was reinforced by artillery and missiles cover and was also supported by Arab coalition aircrafts and warships near the port of Al-Mokha. Moreover the coalition forces intensified raids targeting militia hubs and gatherings in the north of Hodeida and in the south-east of Midi, where they killed many Houthi and Sleh militiamen. In fine several Houthi militias fled towards the south after these attaccks.
Yemen’s Deputy Minister of Transport Nasser Sharif said the ministry is working on the reopening of the ports of Al-Hodeida and Al-Mokha after their liberation from Houthis. The Minister also said that the reopening of the port of Al-Hodeida will be a blow to the Houthis, who use the port as a link to transport weapons and to disrupt maritime navigation. Concerning the port of Al-Mokha, Sharif said that after the government’s approval the presidency of the Red Sea Ports will be transfer to Al-Mokha.
The Patriot system intercepted 12 ballistic missiles on Saturday, launched by Houthi militias toward the Yemeni city of Al-Mokha in less than one hour. There were no casualities as the missiles were intercepted, but the attack is a clear signal of Iran’s intention to shift the global attention to Yemen. For thet reason the Yemeni government spokesman called on the international community to disarm the militia, which is a risk for the lives of Yemeni civilians. Moreover Al-Shehri, a political analyst and international relations expert, said that an action similar to the US strike in Syria in response to the chemical attack must be taken also against Iran in Yemen in order to bring the Yemeni crisis to a peaceful settlement.
The city of Hodeida in Yemen was declared a military zone by the Saudi-led coalition. Due to this decision civilians should stay in their home and avoid clashes until further notice. After the recapture of the city of al-Mokha, 20 rebels and government troops were killed overnight in clashes that erupted the day after government forces seized control of the area. A military source said the death tool stands at 14 rebels and 6 troops and 8 dead were confirmed by a source of Hodeida hospital.
Protect Yemen civilians is one of the top priorities for the Saudi-led coalition. The coalition forces have an interest in restoring legitimacy in Yemen and show concern for the lives of civilians and for humanitarian rights. The coalition is constantly working with UN organizations and International Red Cross and Red Crescent societies to support humanitarian effrots. There is also an independent team which is working to develop investigation procedures on accidents and incidents and provides reports about each incident. The coalition is trying to evacuate civilians in conflict areas before launching airstrikes on hiding places of Houthis and other rebels but Houthis are using civilians as human shields and deliberately hid fighters and weapons near civilians in al-Mokha and Taiz to avoid being attacked, evenf if in violation of international humanitarian law.
The United Nations Human Rights Agency warned about violation of international humanitarian law and international human rights law over the past two weeks in the south wester port of al-Mokha. Even if it was impossible for UN Human Rights office field monitors to acces the area, credible reports indicate that civilians were caught in an intolerable situation. Probably 200 houses were damaged or completely destroyed by the airstrikes. The UN also estimates that around 12 million people are facing famine in the country and 3.3 million people are already malnourished.