Last Update 18:50
Friday, 29 May 2020

Yemen pro-govt forces seize Hodeida airport from rebels: Coalition

AFP , Wednesday 20 Jun 2018
Airport
This Saturday, June 16, 2018 file still image taken from video provided by Arab 24 shows Saudi-led forces gathering to retake the international airport of Yemen's rebel-held port city of Hodeida from the Shiite Houthi rebels. (AP photo)
Share/Bookmark
Views: 1622
Share/Bookmark
Views: 1622

Yemeni government forces seized Hodeida airport from Huthi rebels on Wednesday, the coalition said, in a major step towards retaking the key Red Sea port city.

"The airport was completely cleared, Thank God, and is under control," coalition commander for the Red Sea coast, Abdul Salaam al-Shehi, said in a video posted by the United Arab Emirates' official WAM news agency.

Last Wednesday, government forces and the Saudi-led coalition launched an offensive to clear Hodeida of rebel fighters who have held it since 2014, raising UN concerns for vital aid shipments and commercial food imports through the city's docks.

The airport is disused but housed a major rebel base just inland from the coast road into the city from the south.

It lies just eight kilometres (five miles) from the city's port, through which three-quarters of Yemen's imports pass, providing a lifeline for some 22 million people dependent on aid.

UN envoy Martin Griffiths held four days of talks in the rebel-held capital Sanaa in a bid to avert an all-out battle for the city but flew out on Tuesday without announcing any breakthrough.

The United Arab Emirates and other members of a Saudi-led coalition that intervened in support of the government in 2015 have accused regional arch foe Iran of using Hodeida as conduit for arms smuggling to the rebels. Tehran has denied the allegation.

*This story was edited by Ahram Online. 

Short link:

 

Latest

© 2010 Ahram Online.