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Thousands of Families Flee Houthis in Hodeidah for Liberated Yemeni Regions

Thousands of Families Flee Houthis in Hodeidah for Liberated Yemeni Regions

Wednesday, 4 July, 2018 - 05:30
Girls stand at the entrance to their tent at a camp for internally displaced people in Saada, Yemen. (Reuters)

Thousands of Yemeni families managed to flee the Iran-backed Houthis in the city of Hodeidah for regions under the control of the legitimate government.


Aide at the Ministry of Local Administration and general coordinator of the Higher Relief Committee Jamal Balfaqih said that some 5,000 families fled Hodeidah to Aden, which is controlled by the legitimate government.


Some 100 have sought refuge in the Marib province and 200 in Hadramawt, he told Asharq Al-Awsat.


He explained that this displacement was prompted by the Houthis’ oppression of the people in Hodeidah, where they were using them human shields and had seized their homes for their military purposes.


He also accused the militias of forcing the people out of their homes to areas under their control so that they could recruit children for their war effort in violation of all international laws.


The freeze in the Hodeidah operations helped facilitate the departure of the people from the area, Balfaqih continued.


He lamented that some partners in international agencies often side with the Houthis.


In addition, he explained that the Yemeni government had tasked the Higher Relief Committee with devising an emergency plan for the West coast that would be implemented with the assistance of Saudi Arabia’s King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSRelief) and the United Arab Emirates Red Crescent.


“We have requested the establishment of a center that can receive the refugees and provide them with food and water and health services,” he stated.


Tents have been set up on the al-Khokha region, which has cut short the distance the displaced would have had to cross to reach safety, he explained. The camp is currently housing 700 families.


Moreover, Balfaqih urged the United Nations to enable the legitimate government to recapture all Yemeni territory according to the relevant Security Council resolutions and put a stop to Iran’s meddling in the region in order to protect international navigation and the safety of neighboring countries.


Separately, the Arab Coalition announced Tuesday that eight permits were granted in the past 24 hours to ships headed to Yemeni ports, including Hodeidah.


Five ships were already at Hodeidah harbor and ready to unload their cargo. Six other vessels were awaiting to be granted entry.


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