Saudi-led forces close air, sea and land access to Yemen
The Saudi-led military coalition fighting against the Houthi movement in Yemen said on Monday it would close all air, land and sea ports to the Arabian Peninsula country to stem the flow of arms to the Houthis from Iran.
The move, which follows the interception of a missile fired toward the Saudi capital Riyadh on Saturday, is likely to worsen a humanitarian crisis in Yemen that according to the United Nations has pushed some seven million people to the brink of famine and left nearly 900,000 infected with cholera, APA reports quoting Reuters.
“The Coalition Forces Command decided to temporarily close all Yemeni air, sea and land ports,” the coalition said in a statement on the Saudi state news agency SPA. It said aid workers and humanitarian supplies would continue to be able to access and exit Yemen.
The United Nations, however, said it was not given approval for two scheduled humanitarian flights on Monday and was seeking clarification on the coalition’s announcement.
The state news agency Saba, run by the Houthis, quoted a source in the navy warning against the closure of ports and said it would have, “catastrophic consequences”.
The United Nations and international aid organizations have repeatedly criticized the coalition for blocking aid access, especially to north Yemen, which is held by the Iran-aligned Houthi movement battling the Saudi-led coalition.
Saudi Arabia and its Gulf Arab allies have made clear they view Iran as mainly responsible for the Yemen conflict, in which more than 10,000 people have been killed in the past two years.
Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said on his Twitter account on Monday that Riyadh reserved the right to respond to what he called Iran’s “hostile actions”. Bahraini Foreign Minister Sheikh Khaled bin Ahmed al-Khalifa also tweeted that Iran was the real danger to the region.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said Saudi Arabia was blaming Tehran for the consequences of its own “wars of aggression”.
On Sunday the coalition accused the Houthis of “dangerous escalation (that) came because of Iranian support” after Saudi air defences intercepted the ballistic missile heading toward Riyadh. It was brought down near Riyadh airport without causing casualties.
Related news releases
- 21.11.2017Pakistani forces rescue 18 hostages near Iran’s border
- 21.11.2017At least three dead, 20 feared trapped after plant in India collapses
- 21.11.2017Suspected cholera cases in Yemen hit 940,000: WHO
- 20.11.2017Iran president due in Russia on Wednesday for tripartite talks
- 20.11.2017Third round of Iran-EU talks kicks off in Tehran
- 20.11.2017Iraq top court declares Kurdish referendum ‘unconstitutional’
- 20.11.2017Tuck-minibus collision leaves 17 dead in Pakistan
- 19.11.2017Syrian army clashes with IS in Abu Kamal — SANA
- 19.11.2017Militants shell southeastern outskirts of Damascus — media
- 18.11.2017India's Manushi Chhillar wins Miss World 2017
- 18.11.2017Japanese tug boat crashes into US warship during exercise
- 18.11.20173 PKK terrorists killed in northern Iraq
- 18.11.20176.9 magnitude earthquake hits southern China
- 18.11.2017Japan begins disposal of radioactive waste from Fukushima disaster
- 18.11.2017Hariri to leave Saudi Arabia for France on Friday: MP
- 17.11.2017World's first human head transplant carried out
- 17.11.2017Yemeni governor announces resignation
- 16.11.2017Pakistan's parliament restores finality of prophet law
- 16.11.2017Suicide bomber kills nine near Afghan political meeting
- 16.11.20172,200 cholera deaths recorded in Yemen since April: WHO
- 15.11.201748 terrorists killed, 13 villages taken in Iraq's Anbar
- 15.11.2017Opium production in Afghanistan hits record high: UN
- 15.11.2017East China road accident death toll rises to 18
- 15.11.2017Muslim state’s meddling in Lebanon ‘shameful’: Iran’s Rouhani
- 15.11.2017Indonesian police officer killed in shooting near Freeport mine
- 14.11.2017Syrian National Dialogue Congress to be held in early December
- 14.11.20175 PKK terrorists killed in southeastern Turkey
- 14.11.201722 policemen killed in Taliban group attack in Afghanistan
- 14.11.2017Air strikes kill 29 in market in northern Syria
- 14.11.2017Defecting North Korean soldier shot in back, survives to cross DMZ
- 14.11.2017Saudi Arabia to meet Syrian opposition next week
- 14.11.2017Army retakes 6 villages in western Iraq from Daesh
- 13.11.2017Strong earthquake hits Iran-Iraq border, kills about 450 - UPDATED-3
- 13.11.2017Iran sticks to key limits of nuclear deal: U.N. watchdog report
- 13.11.201725 militants surrender to Syrian authorities in Aleppo province
- 12.11.2017Russian combat engineers defuse over 400 explosive devices in Deir ez-Zor in 24 hours
- 12.11.2017Abe hails 'fresh start' to Japan-China ties after Xi meeting
- 11.11.2017Bahrain calls oil pipeline fire ‘a terrorist act’
- 11.11.2017North Korea not discussed in detail by Putin, Trump in Vietnam - Kremlin
- 11.11.2017Putin denies claims of Russia’s meddling efforts in US election at talks with Trump
- 07.11.2017Philippines: Nine more militants killed in Marawi
- 07.11.2017Casualties feared as TV station in Afghan capital comes under attack
- 07.11.2017Three killed, 13 civilians injured in attacks near Syria's Damascus
- 07.11.2017North Korea threatens ‘merciless retaliation’ to Trump’s remarks’
- 06.11.2017Pakistani diplomatic official killed in Afghanistan
- 05.11.2017Trump arrives in Japan, first in five-country Asian tour