Millions face starvation in Yemen as Saudi refuses to reopen Hodeideh port

The announcement from the Saudi mission at the United Nations came after the coalition fighting Yemen's rebels, known as Houthis, faced widespread worldwide criticism over the closure, with the U.N. and over 20 aid groups saying it could bring millions of people closer to "starvation and death".

However, Yemeni officials in Sanaa, which is held by the Houthi rebels, said that the airports runway and a ground navigation tower were damaged. Fix crews were already at work, they added, speaking on condition of anonymity as they were not authorized to talk to reporters.

Jamie McGoldrick said the north of the country had 20 days' stocks of diesel, which were crucial for pumping water and fighting a huge cholera outbreak, and 10 days' stocks of gasoline, with no prospect of resupply soon.

The Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen announced a suspension of border crossing via air, marine and land routes following a ballistic missile fired from Yemen targeting Saudi capital Riyadh on November 6.

Saudi Arabia announced on Monday that the Coalition Supporting Legitimacy in Yemen would begin gradually reopening airports and seaports in Yemen, days after closing them over a Houthi ballistic attack on Riyadh. "If left untreated, 150,000 malnourished children could die within the coming months", the three major aid agencies said in their statement Thursday, significantly adding to the figure presented by Save the Children.

The reported airstrike on Sanaa airport came as flights resumed to the airport in the government-held southern city of Aden, after the coalition granted permission for them to resume.

Stephane Dujarric said Guterres welcomes the reopening of the port in the city of Aden but that this "will not meet the needs of 28 million Yemenis".

The Islamic State group meanwhile struck a fresh blow to Saudi-allied forces in the country's south, where a suicide vehicle bombing early on Tuesday targeted security forces in the port city of Aden, killing at least six people and wounding scores. Residents several kilometers (miles) away heard a large explosion and saw thick black smoke rising from the area. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to speak to the media.

The coalition has partially eased some restrictions on ports controlled by the Saudi-backed Yemeni government, but the United Nations is insisting on access to Hodeida and Saleef ports.


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