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Saudi Arabia Warns UN, Aid Workers to Leave Yemen
International

Saudi Arabia Warns UN, Aid Workers to Leave Yemen

Saudi Arabia, which is leading airstrikes in neighboring Yemen, has warned the United Nations and international aid groups to protect staff by removing them from areas held by Yemen’s Houthis.
According to a letter that was seen by Reuters on Thursday, the short note sent by the Saudi Embassy in London on Friday said the intention was to “protect the international organizations and their employees”, presumably from coalition airstrikes.
The Saudi ambassador to the United Nations in New York, Abdallah Al-Mouallimi, said Riyadh sent the letter because, “We’re just concerned for the safety of the UN staff and their humanitarian agencies. We want them to go away from areas that are obvious targets.”
Saudi Arabia leads a coalition of nine Arab countries that began a military campaign in March to prevent Houthi fighters from taking complete control of Yemen.
UN aid chief, Stephen O’Brien, acknowledged receipt of the note in a Sunday letter and said the humanitarian community would continue to deliver aid across Yemen impartially on the basis of need. He reminded Saudi Arabia of obligations under international humanitarian law to facilitate access for aid.
 
CAPTION:
A man inspects his home destroyed by Saudi-led airstrikes in Sanaa, Yemen
The old city of Sana’a after a Saudi airstrike destroyed several homes.
In the historical old city of Sana’a, civilians, local response teams and Houthi fighters clear the rubble of four houses that were destroyed by what witnesses described as a missile or bomb from a Saudi Arabian warplane

 

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