envoy to yemen calls for urgent steps to humanitarian crisis
Last Updated : GMT 12:24:11
Arab Today, arab today
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Amid calls for reopening airport

Envoy to Yemen calls for urgent steps to humanitarian crisis

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today Envoy to Yemen calls for urgent steps to humanitarian crisis

UN Yemen envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed
Aden - Arabs Today

The UN Yemen envoy called on Friday for the urgent reopening of the airport in the capital Sanaa, which has been closed to all but limited UN flights for a year. UN agencies and aid groups have called repeatedly for the airport to be reopened to allow the delivery of desperately needed relief to the millions of Yemenis caught up in the conflict who face a deadly cholera outbreak and looming famine.

“I reiterate my call for the urgent and immediate need to reopen Sanaa international airport as soon as possible,” UN Yemen envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed tweeted after three days of talks in neighboring Saudi Arabia. Yemen has been since March 2015 under a brutal aggression by Saudi-led coalition. Tens of thousands of Yemenis have been injured and martyred in Saudi-led strikes, with the vast majority of them are civilians.

The coalition has been imposing a blockade on the impoverished country’s ports and airports as a part of his aggression which is aimed at restoring power to fugitive former president Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi.

In the same context, the Arab Coalition to Restore the Legitimate Government in Yemen asked on Thursday that the UN operate Sana’a airport. It revealed that it has followed up on reports published by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in Yemen regarding banning commercial flights from and to Sana’a International Airport.

Official Spokesman of the coalition Colonel Turki al-Malki said that the Joint Forces Command had and is still working to its best efforts to ensure the safe arrival of all commercial, cargo and relief flights to all Yemeni airports in Sana’a, Aden, Hodeidah, Seiyun, Mukalla and Socotra through issuing proper flight permits for all incoming requests, and assigning Bisha National Airport for air traffic management in accordance with UN Security Council resolution 2216.

“Closing Sana’a airport and limiting it to relief efforts came as a precaution to ensure the safety of all inbound commercial and cargo flights, due to the Houthi armed militia’s attempts to smuggle arms into the country,” he said.

According to Al-Malki, the Coalition has assigned airports in liberated and secure cities as alternatives at the request of the Yemeni government, adding that the precautionary measures should not be stigmatized as a cause of suffering for the Yemeni people.

The Colonel also clarified that the number of flight permits issued to every Yemeni airport since the beginning of operations has reached 5,765 for commercial, cargo and humanitarian relief flights. The UN was asked to contribute in resuming flights from and to Sana’a airport through managing airport security and putting the legitimate Yemeni government fears to rest.

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