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Saudi-Led Coalition Claims Advance Against Houthis at Hodeidah Airport

19 June 2018

He is expected to propose to rebel leaders that they halt fighting and cede control of Hudaida's vital port to a UN-supervised committee.

The envoy did not make any statement on his arrival at Sanaa worldwide airport.

UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash on Twitter backed "the envoy's efforts to facilitate the safe handover of Hodeida to the legitimate Yemeni Government". "The coalition will continue with its military and humanitarian preparations to achieve this urgent result", Gargash wrote.

More than 70 percent of imports to all of Yemen pass through the docks of the Hodeida port.

Yemen's government and its allies launched their offensive on Wednesday.

But later on Saturday, Houthi-linked civil aviation authorities denied the rebels had lost control over the airport.

Children stand behind a fence at a school to which they have been evacuated from a village near Hodeidah airport amid fighting between government forces and Houthi fighters in Hodeidah, Yemen June 17, 2018.

The war between the Houthi rebels and the backers of Yemen's government has raged for more than three years.

"Aggression forces have never secured any achievement in Hodeidah, morale of Yemeni Army, popular committees high", the Yemeni official added.

Members of Yemen's Houthi rebel movement shot dead a young man in the street in Sanaa on Sunday because he refused to fight for them, the victim's father said.

United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator Lise Grande says talks for the U.N.to take administrative control of the Hodeida International Airport in Yemen are in advanced stages, according to The Guardian.

The fighting is already nearing densely populated residential areas, the Norwegian Refugee Council warned, and aid distributions have been suspended in the west of the city.

The World Health Organization called on all sides "to protect health workers and their facilities from harm, as well as to ensure unimpeded access for medical teams seeking to treat the wounded".

The spokesman also briefed on the work of the worldwide humanitarian organizations in all Yemeni territories, and delivery of aid through land, air and sea crossings. "Our approach is methodical, gradual, calibrated to squeeze, to make a point, to allow the Houthis to do the right thing, which is basically decide to withdraw unconditionally".

Al-Malki also spoke about the progress of the political process in Yemen, the most recent of which was the visit of the new United Nations envoy Martin Griffith to Yemen in early June, during which he met with the Yemeni President Abd Rabbo Mansour Hadi and some representatives of the countries in the region, before moving to Sanaa.

Saudi-Led Coalition Claims Advance Against Houthis at Hodeidah Airport