At least 26 dead in strikes on Yemen's Hodeida
August 02 2018 08:33 PM
Yemen
A man stands near a car damaged by a strike near al-Thawra Hospital in Hodeidah on Thursday.

AFP/Sanaa

At least 26 people were killed on Thursday in an air strike at the entrance to a hospital and the bombardment of a fish market in Yemen's rebel-held port city Hodeida, medics and witnesses said.
"The number of people killed in the two attacks has reached 26," a doctor in the Red Sea city told AFP, with other medical sources putting the number of wounded admitted to hospital at 60.
Yemeni government forces backed by a Saudi-led coalition have been conducting an offensive to capture Hodeida from Iran-backed Houthi rebels, but announced last month they were pausing the assault to give UN mediation efforts a chance.
Strikes have picked up again around Hodeida since the Saudis last week said that two oil tankers operated by one of the kingdom's companies were attacked in the waters of the Red Sea.
Rebel-run media outlets accused the Saudi-led coalition of carrying out the two attacks on Thursday, but there was no immediate response from the alliance headed by Riyadh. 
The air raid hit at the entrance to Hodeida's main Al-Thawra hospital, one of the busiest medical facilities in conflict-wracked Yemen. 
The pro-Houthi Al-Masirah television channel put the death toll from that strike alone at "30 dead" and launched an appeal for blood donations.
The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Yemen said it was "sending surgical material enough to treat 50 severely wounded people to the (ICRC) supported Al-Thawra Hospital in Hodeida after vicinity targeted".
On June 13, Saudi Arabia and its allies in a pro-government coalition launched a major offensive to retake Hodeida, through which 70% of Yemen's food imports flow.
The fighting around Hodeida has raised UN fears of a new humanitarian catastrophe in a country already standing at the brink of famine and gripped by a deadly cholera epidemic. 
The United Arab Emirates, part of a Saudi-led coalition backing the Yemeni government, said on July 1 that it had suspended an offensive to take the port city to allow time for UN peace efforts.
The Yemeni authorities and their backers are demanding that the Houthis withdraw from Hodeida and that the government retakes control. 
UN envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths has been pushing for a deal which envisions the rebels ceding control of Hodeida port to a UN-supervised committee.

Last updated: August 02 2018 11:35 PM


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