United Nations council fails to push Saudi coalition over Yemen blockade

United Nations council fails to push Saudi coalition over Yemen blockade

Saudi Arabia's mission to the United Nations says the Saudi-led coalition fighting Shiite rebels in Yemen will begin reopening airports and seaports in the Arab world's poorest country. The missile was intercepted near the capital of the country.

On Tuesday, Yemen's airline said a commercial plane landed at Aden worldwide airport after acquiring permits from the Saudi-led coalition.

Aden port, which is controlled by allies of Saudi Arabia, does not have the capacity to handle the necessary volume of humanitarian cargo, he added.

Yemeni officials in Sanaa, which is held by the rebels, said the airport's runway had also been damaged, claiming fix crews were already at work. It calls on Saudi Arabia to not target school, hospitals or other targets on its no-strike list and to broadly improve targeting.

Hopes that Sanaa International Airport would be opened to aid flights to at least slightly ease the crisis were dashed Tuesday morning when Saudi warplanes attacked the airport, destroying its navigation station and effectively shutting it down.

Abdallah Al-Mouallimi said the reopening of the ports was for the "safe transfer of humanitarian actors and humanitarian and commercial shipments" into Yemen.

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

"The humanitarian aspect of this is something we need to address immediately because we can't have those ports closed or those airports closed while we wait for discussions on new (inspection) mandates to go ahead".

Seven million people are at risk of starvation in Yemen, according to the United Nations, and are relying nearly exclusively on aid to feed themselves.

Adding to the woes of aid workers on the ground, stocks of diphtheria vaccines will be emptied in two weeks unless aid deliveries are once again allowed in the country, United Nations spokesman Farhan Haq said.

Saudi Arabia and its allies tightened a longstanding blockade of Yemen's land, sea and air borders a week ago in response to a missile fired by the Iran-backed Huthis that was intercepted near Riyadh worldwide airport.

Skoog said he was "distraught" but did not indicate whether Sweden, a non-permanent council member, will seek another emergency council meeting on the aid blockade.

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