Published: Mon, November 12, 2018
World News | By Laverne Osborne

Yemeni rebel minister defects to Saudi Arabia

Yemeni rebel minister defects to Saudi Arabia

View of the Red Sea port city of Hodeidah, Yemen, on June 14, 2018.

WASHINGTON/CAIRO-The United States will stop refueling aircraft from the Saudi-led coalition that is fighting Iran-allied Houthi rebels in Yemen, according to an announcement by the coalition on November 10.

Street battles raged on Sunday in several areas of Yemen's contested port city of Hodeida, where a US -backed, Saudi-led coalition is trying to drive out Iran-backed Shiite rebels, officials said. Medics at a hospital in government-held Mokha, south of Hodeida, said another nine loyalist fighters were killed.

Dozens of wounded rebels were transferred to hospitals in the provinces of Sanaa and Ibb, further inland, a source at the Hodeidah military hospital said.

Yemenis across the city have reported seeing snipers stationed on rooftops and rebels with tanks firing artillery in Hodeida.

"Today, with God's help, we've been able to take over Thabit Brothers Industrial complex in the east of the city", said a fighter from the Amalqa (Giants) Brigade, a military unit loyal to the Yemeni government.

Hodeidah is a vital lifeline for Yemenis across the war-torn country, as the majority of imports and humanitarian aid enter through its port.

The Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen also drew global ire in August when a coalition airstrike hit a school bus in northern Yemen and killed at least 50 people, including many children. Murphy said. "Now that it's no longer a secret that the war in Yemen is a national security and humanitarian nightmare, we need to get all the way out".

Saudi Arabia is leading a coalition of forces against Iran-aligned Houthi fighters in Yemen, in a conflict that has driven much of Yemen's population to the brink of starvation.

Chargers release Caleb Sturgis, sign Michael Badgley
But as Wilson barked out signals, Chargers defensive lineman Corey Liguet rolled back and forth in his stance once, then twice. And the final blow came after a Desmond King 42-yard pick-6 with 6:44 to play that would have put the Chargers up by 16.

Mariam Aldogani, Save the Children's field co-ordinator in Yemen, said that the people in Hodeidah are living in a "state of fear".

Pentagon chief Jim Mattis said he supported Saudi Arabia's "decision" after the official Saudi Press Agency said the coalition asked for the "cessation of inflight refueling support" from the United States.

The Trump administration has repeatedly said it believes the Saudi-led coalition is doing all it can to reduce civilian casualties in the conflict, which is a key part of a broader proxy war between Saudi Arabia and Iran.

The refueling change does not affect the USA military assistance and training to improve the Saudi airstrikes, which have reportedly caused thousands of civilian deaths.

"The continued escalation of attacks ... by the US-Saudi-Emirati coalition confirms that the American calls for a cease-fire are nothing but empty talk", Mohammed Ali al-Houthi, head of the group's supreme revolutionary committee, wrote in a column published by the Washington Post on Friday.

On Yemen, top administration officials have said recently it's time to end the conflict and move to a peaceful resolution.

Late last month, Mattis and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called on the Houthis and the Saudi-led coalition to embrace a ceasefire within 30 days, asking the Houthis to first cease their missile and drone attacks on Saudi Arabia and the UAE and for the Saudi-led coalition to subsequently halt airstrikes on Houthi targets in Yemen.

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet on Saturday expressed outrage at the "unconscionable toll" from the fighting on an already "deeply frightened and starving" population.

Like this: