- Khalid Al-Yamani : The international community is now conscious about the need to liberate territories in the western coastline and the withdrawal of militias from Hodeidah
- Al-Yamani stressed that Houthi control of Hodeidah threatens the security and stability of countries in the Middle East, and the world in general.
LONDON: Yemen’s Foreign Minister Khalid Al-Yamani said that the Saudi-led coalition and Yemeni government’s diplomatic efforts have convinced states that previously had reservations about the military operation in Hodeidah of the importance of liberating the port city.
“During the last few days, we explained to the international community about the importance of recapturing the port of Hodeidah to protect international security and water passages from Houthi militias which are using the port to smuggle arms from Iran, launch missiles on civilian ships and plant cluster bombs in the area south of the Red Sea,” Al-Yamani told Asharq Al-Awsat on Friday.
Yamani further explained that the states, which had previously expressed reservations, now understand the measures taken by the Yemeni government and the Saudi-led Coalition to liberate the port city and stop Houthi threats to international navigation and the delivery of humanitarian aid.
“The international community is now conscious about the need to liberate territories in the western coastline and the withdrawal of militias from Hodeidah,” he said.
Some states had expressed fears that the Hodeidah offensive would trigger a humanitarian crisis in the city, the minister told Asharq Al-Awsat.
“But we have asserted that military operations … are happening in tandem with relief efforts to help the city’s residents,” he said.
The foreign minister also said that there were no reports of a humanitarian crisis in the strategic port city eight days into the operation to liberate it.
“The Yemeni Army has already called on residents to stay away from areas controlled by militias,” stated Al-Yamani.
Saba news agency reported that Al-Yamani received a telephone call Friday from Alistair Burt, the Minister of State for the Middle East at the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
They discussed the latest developments in Yemen and humanitarian aid to Hodeidah, according to Saba.
Al-Yamani stressed that Houthi control of Hodeidah threatens the security and stability of countries in the Middle East, and the world in general. He said that “it is no longer possible to remain silent about Houthi threats to navigation in Bab Al-Mandab and the Red Sea.”
The two ministers also confirmed their support of efforts exerted by the UN Envoy to Yemen, Martin Griffith, for a peaceful solution in Hodeidah, hoping that he will convince the militias to hand over the city and its port to Yemen’s government.