Saudi UN ambassador denies Yemen embargo

Lester Mason
November 14, 2017

Saudi Arabia's United Nations ambassador, Abdallah al-Mouallimi, said Monday that tighter restrictions were demanded on the key port of Hodeida.

The Saudi U.N. ambassador denied that there has been an embargo, saying "a temporary procedure" was taken for a few days to ensure the safety and security of Yemenis and Saudis, and that supplies were available.

Ambassador Abdallah Al-Mouallimi reiterated at a news conference at United Nations headquarters in NY on Monday that closed seaports and airports will start reopening within the 24 hours promised late Sunday. "There are many sources of supply to Yemen, even during the past week or so".

The Saudi-led coalition said it will not re-open a Yemeni key port to aid shipments, in a move that tightens the blockade on the Arab impoverished country which has been under brutal aggression by the coalition for almost three years.

On Monday, the coalition said that it would temporarily close all air, land and sea ports to stem the tide of arms being sent to Houthi rebels from Iran.

Al-Mouallimi also accused the Houthis of diverting humanitarian aid "to fulfill their own requirements" and "to trade in the black market and achieve exorbitant profits at the expense of the Yemeni people".

He did not give any reasons for the reopening of the port, which is located in the south of the country - though the coalition greatly controls Aden.

Al-Mouallimi told reports from NY that the Coalition would conduct this process in complete agreement with Yemen's internationally recognized government, to allow the safe delivery of humanitarian aid.

The move came after Saudi Arabia intercepted a missile fired towards Riyadh, which it blamed on Tehran.

The government-held southern Yemeni port of Aden was reopened on Wednesday, but ports in Houthi-held areas are still shut.

Nine days ago, the Houthis launched a missile at the Saudi capital, Riyadh.

Despite the Saudi announcement, a top leader of Yemen's Shiite rebels on Monday vowed retaliation against the oil-rich kingdom over its blockade of his war-torn country.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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