KSA, UAE urge the human rights, UN bodies to expedite aid through Hodeida port


RIYADH — Advisor-Royal Court Dr. Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz Al-Rabeeah, who is also the General Supervisor of King Salman Center for Humanitarian Assistance and Relief Aid (KSrelief), and Dr. Reem Bint Ibrahim Al-Hashmi, UAE minister of state for international cooperation affairs, co-held a press conference on Wedneday here on behalf of the Coalition for the Restoration of Legitimacy in Yemen to cast light on the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Yemen in general, and Houthi-controlled Hodeida port and province in particular.

In a joint statement, the two sides shed light on the flagrant violations committed by the Houthi militias in Hodeida port, barring foreign assistance to be delivered to the needy inside Yemen, confiscating the contents of vessels waiting outside the docks of the port to unload the aid.

The humanitarian assistance being sent by international organizations have been looted by the Houthis in control of Hodeida port, while also preventing goods and oil derivatives from entry, causing famine, starvation and poverty inside the province, the report said.

The report citing, former UN envoy for Yemen’s report, said that the Houthis continue to reject an initiative to allow assistance enter into the country.

Since 2015, they have seized 19 assistance-laden vessels, looted and robbed 65 vessels and trucks, and implanted mines on the road of caravans carrying relief items, Al-Rabeeah said.

He gave an account on the relief items provided by the Coalition countries for Yemeni people over the last three years, saying that they amount to $16 billion, including foodstuffs, medical assistance, accommodation items, social support, education, refugee support, economic support and developmental programs and bilateral support in addition to other programs.

He announced that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the UAE would provide relief and humanitarian assistance through Hodeida port in the form of a sea bridge from Jazan port and Abu-Dhabi port to Hodeida.

Further to the poor infrastructure in the province, the Houthis have destroyed the remnants of service facilities in Hodeida province and Yemen at large, the statement said.

He gave an account on the Saudi assistance and relief items provided for Yemenis, since May 2015 to date that’s worth more than $1 billion, the assistance provided by KSrelief amounting to 262 projects through 80 local and international partners, including health, food security, early treatment, accommodation and shelter, water, environment treatment, nutrition, education, protection and others, including 71 projects for women and 83 humanitarian projects for children.

He said Saudi Arabia received 561,911 Yemeni refugees and in response to the WHO and UNICEF, provided $66.7 million to combat cholera in Yemen.

On her part, the UAE senior official said the UAE has responded to the UN plan to give relief to Yemen and offered $500 million in support of the plan. She cast light on the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Yemen because of the Houthi control in Sanaa and Hodeida. — SPA