Saudi Arabia says it will reopen Yemen’s airports and seaports

Cairo   –       A Saudi-led alliance will start reopening airports and seaports in Yemen to allow humanitarian and commercial shipments, Saudi Arabia’s mission to the United Nations said on Monday.

“The first step in this process will be taken within the next 24 hours and involves reopening of all the ports in areas controlled by the government of Yemen,’’ the statement read.

The statement referred to the Saudi-backed government, seated in the south-western city of Aden.

“These ports are in Aden, Mocha and Mukalla,’’ it added.

The Saudi-led alliance closed all of Yemen’s main air and sea ports recently, a move it said was aimed at stopping the flow of arms to Iran-backed Houthi rebels.

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The blockade came in response to a ballistic missile fired at the Saudi capital Riyadh by the Houthis.

Report says the coalition continues to block traffic at the main airport in the rebel-held capital Sana’a.

Other ports controlled by the rebels include the western port of Hodeida.

The UN and several humanitarian groups warned that millions could die in Yemen from famine if the blockade, which includes relief aid, was not lifted.

Yemen, one of the Arab world’s poorest countries, has been locked in a devastating power struggle between the government and the rebels since late 2014.

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