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Saudi-Led Coalition Releases 200 Houthi Prisoners

Saudi-Led Coalition Releases 200 Houthi Prisoners

Tuesday, 26 November, 2019 - 14:15
A view of the old quarter of Sanaa, Yemen November 14, 2018. REUTERS/Mohamed al-Sayaghi/File Photo

A Saudi-led military coalition said on Tuesday it had released 200 Houthi prisoners to support peace efforts aimed at ending the nearly five-year war in Yemen.

The coalition also said in a statement carried on Saudi state media that it would ease restrictions on Yemeni airspace to allow flights out of the Houthi-held capital, Sanaa, to transport people requiring medical treatment abroad.

The spokesman for the coalition forces, Colonel Turki al-Maliki, said there will be flights, in cooperation with the World Health Organization, to transport patients from the capital Sanaa to countries where they can receive appropriate treatment for their cases.

The coalition leadership is keen to continue supporting efforts to resolve the crisis in Yemen and push forward the Stockholm Agreement, including the agreement on prisoner exchange, and to create the atmosphere to overcome any points of disagreement, added Maliki.

The Stockholm Agreement called for the withdrawal of troops on both sides from the major port city of Hodeidah in order to admit humanitarian aid to Yemenis afflicted by famine due to four years of civil war.

Maliki says the exchange of prisoners is a humanitarian issue in the first place and a continuation of the coalition's efforts to improve the humanitarian situation, especially the health of the Yemeni people, including provisions of the relevant international laws and agreements.

The coalition intervened in Yemen in March 2015 against the Iran-aligned Houthi movement that ousted the internationally recognized government from power in Sanaa.

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