Sixteen seaports, border crossings receiving international aid for Yemeni people: Arab Coalition

RIYADH, 10th January, 2018 (WAM) -- There are 16 seaports and border crossings currently receiving assistance from international humanitarian agencies for the Yemeni people, the spokesman for the Saudi-led Arab Coalition Supporting Legitimacy in Yemen said on Wednesday.

The coalition forces have issued a large number of permits for maritime aid shipments, Colonel Turki bin Saleh al-Maliki added at a news conference here today, reaffirming the Coalition's commitment to support the relief efforts and help the Yemeni National Army defeat the rebel forces.

During the weekly press conference held this evening at King Salman Base in Riyadh, Colonel al-Maliki reviewed video segments highlighting efforts of the coalition forces in Yemen to restore security and stability in the Yemeni governorates and military operations carried out by the coalition forces professionally and accurately against the Houthi militias both inside Yemen and on the Saudi-Yemeni border.

The United Nations should take the initiative and control the Red Sea port of Al-Hudaidah, and while supervising the operation of seaport, the UN is required to make sure of orderly delivery of aid to the Yemeni people and prevent arms smuggling to the Houthi militias as per the provisions of the UN Security Council Resolution 2216, he added.

He said that the coalition forces detected the number of ballistic missiles fired from within Yemeni territory towards the cities of the Kingdom, pointing out that they reached 87 ballistic missiles, while the projectiles were 66,119.

"There is no doubt that the port has now become a starting point for terrorist operations to threaten the maritime navigation in the Red Sea and the Bab al-Mandab strait," al-Maliki said.

"The Iran-backed militias are training their member terrorists on targeting marine navigation in the Red Sea and the Straits of Bab-el-Mandeb."

He pointed out that the Houthi militia used radars to monitor the naval ships of the coalition, and commercial vessels crossing Bab al-Mandab, stressing the existence of substantial evidence of the presence of foreign experts in Yemen to support the coup perpetrators.

Colonel al-Maliki said that the coalition is making great efforts to maintain security and stability inside Yemen regarding the smuggling of weapons into Yemen, adding that all the UN member states have responsibilities to implement Resolution 2216 and must take into account all vessels heading for the Yemeni ports. He pointed out that there are some procedures that have been updated concerning the smuggling of weapons, and certain criteria have been developed, including the increase in the number of inspectors and equipment for inspection.

"Customs, taxes and oil revenues are the main sources of funding for these militias in the current conflict in Yemen. They acquired thermal and ballistic missiles and other sophisticated weapons from some powers in the region to prolong the conflict," he added.

He concluded that the coalition forces will continue to support the Yemeni National Army to achieve the objectives of restoring legitimacy in Yemen.


WAM/Hatem Mohamed