At least 20 dead in strikes on Yemen's Hodeida - medics

Sunday, 05 Aug, 2018

A spokesman for the Saudi-led Arab coalition fighting Houthis in Yemen has blamed rebels for Thursday's attacks that killed dozens of civilians in the contested port city of Al Hudaydah, Sputnik reported.

In a Friday statement, Qassemi called the airstrikes as the last in a series of terrible genocide and crimes by Saudi Arabia and its allies in Yemen, and said by taking revenge from Yemeni people and attacking civilian targets like hospitals, residential buildings and public centres, Saudi Arabia and its allies can not make up for their failures and defeats in the battlefield.

Turki Malki told the Saudi-owned Al Arabiya channel.

On July 26, Saudi Arabia said it was temporarily suspending oil shipments through the Bab al-Mandab Strait - one of the world's busiest shipping lanes - after two oil tankers operated by Saudi shipping group Bahri were attacked, slightly damaging one vessel.

The Arab Coalition for the Support of Legitimacy in Yemen earlier accused the Houthi militias of carrying out the attacks.

A member of the political wing of Yemen's Huthi rebels said Saturday the insurgents were willing to attend United Nations -brokered talks, although they had low expectations of a positive outcome.

Missiles hit the crowded fish market, which is a few hundred meters from the city's main hospital.

The war in Yemen, the region's poorest country, started in 2014 after the Iran-aligned Houthi rebels seized control of the capital, Sanaa, and began pushing south towards the country's third-biggest city Aden.

United Nations special envoy Martin Griffiths has held talks with both sides in recent weeks in hopes of preventing a full-scale coalition assault on Hodeida.

"These consultations will provide the opportunity for the parties, among other things, to discuss the framework for negotiations, relevant confidence-building measures and specific plans for moving the process forward", said Mr. Griffiths, requesting the Council's support.

"The scenes coming from Hodeida are horrific".

"Civilians are at risk, infrastructure is at risk, and we as the global community have to demand that the two parties come together and understand the seriousness of this", said Haley.

On Friday, the UN's World Health Organisation said Yemen may be on the brink of a new cholera epidemic, with greater chance of a high death rate due to widespread malnutrition.