Saudi-led Airstrike Kills 12 Civilians in Yemen

Executive director of Human Rights Watch Kenneth Roth

Executive director of Human Rights Watch Kenneth Roth

The United Nations Secretary-General has called for both sides in the Yemen conflict to come to a political agreement to end a war that has now entered its fourth year. "The continuation of these attempts highlights the danger of these militias and those behind them to the regional and worldwide security", he said.

A fire broke out at the Houthi-controlled Yemeni port of Hodeidah early yesterday, destroying warehouses filled with cooking fuel and foodstuffs, port workers said. "I urge all parties to engage with my new Special Envoy, Martin Griffiths, without delay", Guterres told the one-day conference.

Speaking at a high-level pledging conference in Geneva held to discuss the crisis in Yemen, Antonio Guterres asked donor countries to provide almost $3 billion in aid to the country where humanitarian access is restricted in 90 percent of districts.

The United Nations asked donors on Tuesday for almost $3 billion to help an estimated 13 million people who urgently need aid in war-ravaged Yemen.

Guterres noted that Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have generously provided 930 million dollars toward the humanitarian response plan.

According to the WSJ report, the consulting company briefed top Emirati national security officials on two occasions, and experts involved in the making of the war game were unaware of who the client was.

The Saudi aggression was launched in March 2015 in support of Yemen's former Riyadh-friendly government and against the country's Houthi Ansarullah movement, which has been running state affairs in the absence of an effective administration. The three-year war in the country, which was already the Arab world's poorest, has pushed it to the verge of starvation.

The U.N.'s World Food Programme is providing food rations to 7 million Yemenis, up from 3 million past year, Elisabeth Rasmussen, WFP assistant executive director, told the talks. About 1.8 million children under age five are acutely malnourished while 400,000 suffer from severe acute malnutrition, which can be deadly.

Several children were among those killed in a strike on the rebel-held Yemeni port of Hodeida on Monday (April 2), the United Nations said, calling it "one of the deadliest attacks" on minors in the country for years.

"The rainy season is starting, so we need to use the window of opportunity to start a vaccination campaign", he said.

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