الأربعاء , يونيو 17 2020

Countries step up Yemen evacuations

Indian nurse evacuated from Yemen, right, is welcomed by her parents upon arrival in Kochi, India

India is one of several countries to have repatriated its citizens from Yemen

Countries including Pakistan and China are stepping up efforts to evacuate their citizens from Yemen, as its humanitarian situation worsens.

A Pakistani aircraft will fly to the capital Sanaa on Sunday to rescue 170 people.

Flights from China, Egypt, Sudan and Djibouti are also scheduled, according to the Saudi-led coalition fighting Yemen’s Shia Houthi rebels.

The Red Cross has called for a 24-hour ceasefire to bring in medical supplies.

Saudi air strikes continued for an 11th night on Saturday, despite the plea from the agency. Fighting on the ground between the Houthis and forces loyal to President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi also intensified.

An Algerian aircraft rescued 160 of its citizens along with other north Africans on Saturday.

Russia, India and Indonesia are among the countries to have already carried out evacuations amid increasing international concern.

Requests from other nations including Canada, Germany and Iraq were also being processed, the coalition said.

Explosions

It has continued its air campaign, despite the calls from the Red Cross and Russia for a pause to allow further evacuations and humanitarian aid deliveries.

Air strikes hit the capital Sanaa, causing explosions at bases housing army units loyal to the rebels.

The Houthis took control of the capital in September and continue to make gains in southern port of Aden, a stronghold of those loyal to President Hadi. He fled to Saudi Arabia last month.

On Sunday the rebels advanced further into the city, bombarding residential areas and setting fire to several buildings, AFP reports.

The Red Cross described the situation there as dire, with streets “strewn with dead bodies” and the wounded “streaming” into hospitals and clinics.

At least 185 people have been killed and 1,282 injured since in Aden on 26 March, health department director Al-Kheder Lassouar said.

The toll does not include rebel casualties or victims of air raids, he added.

Yemenis search for survivors in the rubble of houses destroyed by Saudi-led airstrikes in a village near Sanaa, Yemen on 4 April 4, 2015.

Houses have been destroyed by air strikes carried out by Saudi Arabia

Yemenis dig graves on 4 April, 2015 to bury the victims of a reported airstrike by the Saudi-led coalition

Charities says more civilians will die unless they are allowed to deliver aid

The Red Cross said “all air, land and sea routes must be opened without delay for at least 24 hours,” or more civilians would die.

The United Nations Security Council is considering Russia’s call for a pause in air strikes.

The council’s president, Dina Kawar, who is also Jordan’s UN ambassador, said members needed time to “reflect on the proposal”.

Over the past two weeks, fighting in Yemen has left more than 500 people dead and about 1,700 wounded, UN humanitarian chief Valerie Amos said.

The Houthis have said their aim is to replace President Hadi’s government, which they accuse of being corrupt.

They are supported by troops loyal to the former president Ali Abdullah Saleh, who was ousted in the Arab Spring protests.

Saudi Arabia says the Houthis have military backing from regional rival Iran, which denies the allegation.

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Yemen: who is fighting whom?

The Houthis: Zaidi Shia-led rebels from the north, who seized control of Sanaa last year and have since been expanding their control

President Hadi: Fled to Saudi Arabia after rebel forces advanced on his stronghold in the southern city of Aden

Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula: Seen by the US as the most dangerous offshoot of al-Qaeda, AQAP opposes both the Houthis and President Hadi.

Islamic State: A Yemeni affiliate of IS has recently emerged, which seeks to eclipse AQAP

Failure ‘not an option for Saudis’

Yemen crisis: An Iranian-Saudi battleground?

Meeting the Houthis – and their enemies

The rise of Yemen’s Houthi rebels

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Have you been affected by the situation in Yemen? Are you, or is anyone you know being evacuated from the country? Email

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