Saudi-led coalition intensifies Yemen air raids, hits grains port

Six people injured after raids hit Houthi-controlled Salif grains port, a warehouse, and a food company’s living quarters.

Smoke rises after Saudi-led air raid on an army base in Sanaa on March 7, 2021 [Khaled Abdullah/Reuters]

The Saudi-led military coalition has carried out dozens of air raids against what it said were Houthi military targets in Yemen’s north, including the capital Sanaa and the port of Salif on the Red Sea coast.

The coalition, which intervened militarily in 2015 months after the Iran-aligned Houthi group captured large parts of northern Yemen including Sanaa, said it struck a missile and drone assembly plant in the Yemeni capital.

The United Nations said air raids also hit the Houthi-controlled Salif grains port, north of Hodeidah, and two projectiles hit a warehouse and the living quarters of a food production company.

“Local authorities and company management stated that six injured workers were transferred to local medical facilities for treatment,” the UN mission in Hodeidah, UNMHA, said in a statement on Monday.

The port of Salif is part of a UN-brokered neutral zone on the Red Sea, according to an agreement signed in 2018 in Stockholm between Yemen’s warring parties.

‘Economic warfare’

Nearly 80 percent of Yemen’s nearly 30 million people depend on foreign aid as large parts of the country have been devastated by the six years of violence that have resulted in what the UN calls the world’s worst humanitarian disaster.

The Houthi-controlled ministry of commerce and industry said attacks on the port were part of the “economic warfare against the Yemeni people”.

The Sanaa-based Al Masirah television channel also reported other air raids in Marib, where heavy fighting has raged over the last few months amid a Houthi offensive to take the gas-producing region.

It added that other attacks hit Hajjah province overnight.

The Saudi-led coalition started bombing campaign in Yemen in March 2015 after the internationally recognised government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi was overthrown by the Houthis in late 2014.

The war, which has been a military deadlock for years, has killed tens of thousands of people and left millions on the brink of famine.

Source: Reuters