YCHO Aid Delivery Announcements: Cranes to be Delivered to Three Different Yemeni Ports
On February 5, 2018, Colonel Turki Al-Maliki, the Coalition Spokesperson, along with Ambassador Mohammed Al Jabir, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s Ambassador to Yemen, and Minster Dr. Moeen Abdulmalik, the Yemeni Minister of Public Works; addressed developments in aid delivery under the auspices of the Yemen Comprehensive Humanitarian Operations (YCHO) at a press conference. The YCHO will deliver four cranes to three Yemeni ports – Mokha (2), Aden (1), and Mukalla (1), a step that will help aid delivery across Yemen and its interior, as well as, stimulate Yemen’s economy.
Ambassador Al Jabir noted that the cranes will help increase deliveries from: 0 to 86,000 tons/month in Mokha; from 470,000 to 700,000 tons/month in Aden; and from 41,000 to 85,000 tons/month in Mukalla. The increase in imports will have an immediate effect on Yemen’s economy and job market.
In addition to the cranes, Ambassador Al Jabir also discussed the air bridge to Ma’rib, the C-130s flying regularly into Yemen from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and the caravans coming through Al Wadeeah land port delivering aid, one of the three border crossings. Seventeen safe passage corridors from six centers around Yemen, which, Ambassador Al Jabir reemphasized, are open to any and all humanitarian organizations to use for aid delivery.
Minister Abdulmalik gave details about the Port of Mokha, which is currently operating at zero capacity due to the Houthi militias, who have turned it into a “military barracks.” This reality, he noted, makes it important to go beyond focusing on Yemen’s ports, and is one of the reasons why the YCHO will diversify the means of aid delivery.
Minister Abdulmalik also noted that all available ports were supporting the delivery of commodities. He noted the Coalition is working with UN organizations and NGOs through land ports to gain access to the people of Hajjah governorate. This was part of the discussion between the YCHO and those on the ground in Yemen, where it was noted how important it was to have safe-passage corridors (17) and secure routes inside Yemen, plus the border crossings. The aid delivery projects in the work include a “comprehensive plan” that includes medicines and foodstuffs delivered through Al Khadra and Al Wadeeah land crossings. Additionally, 55,000 baskets (baskets are foodstuffs for 4-5 people) have been delivered overland to more than 28,000 beneficiaries in Yemen, and that ICRC (Red Cross) trucks containing 44,000 metric tons of aid had reached Sana’a from the Kingdom.
Colonel Al-Maliki noted that security has been restored to the governorate of Aden, citing the recent meetings of high-level security officials initiated by the Kingdom and the UAE. While the Iranian-backed Houthi militias continue to target civilians and violate UN resolution 2216, the Royal Saudi Defense Forces and the Royal Saudi Air Defense Forces have been keeping the peace and ending Houthi aggression. The Iranian-backed Houthi aggression was on display when a ballistic missile was launched from Sada’ah into the Kingdom, targeting civilian areas in Khamis Mushait, which was intercepted February 5, 2018 at 7:23 am by the Royal Saudi Air Defense Forces.
Colonel Al-Maliki displayed evidence of Iranian rockets used by the Houthi militia, including photographs of Iranian missiles on ships in the Arabian Gulf that are identical to the ones used by the Iranian-backed Houthis. The international community should be aware of the threat the Iranian-backed Houthi insurgency poses for international shipping and the speed boats piloted by Houthis that are hiding in mangroves in the Red Sea.
The YCHO is a comprehensive operation that includes aid and infrastructure development, which works to ensure opportunities for security and structure enhancements for Yemen and the Yemeni people that will help stabilize the country and bring an end to the conflict. It is important for the international community to stand together in their aid and support of Yemen, and remain steadfast in the face of the Iranian-backed Houthi aggression and those who support it.