UN Urges Yemen Cease-Fire, Open Ports to Confront Cholera
TEHRAN (Tasnim) - The UN Security Council is urging the warring parties in Yemen to immediately agree on a cease-fire and keep all ports open for humanitarian aid to confront the threat of famine and the rapid spread of cholera.
A presidential statement read at a formal council meeting yesterday urged Houthi Ansarallah movement and the Saudi-backed government to engage in peace talks “in a flexible and constructive manner without preconditions, and in good faith” to end their nearly three-year civil war.
The British-drafted statement, approved by all 15 council members, stressed the importance of keeping all ports, especially Hodeida, as “a critical lifeline” for humanitarian supplies.
It urged both sides “to engage constructively” on the UN special envoy’s proposals to increase shipments through Red Sea ports and resume government salary payments, AP reported.
Last week, the World Health Organization said that the number of suspected cholera cases in war-torn Yemen has risen to more than 100,000 since an outbreak began on April 27.
The rapid spread of the disease through 19 of Yemen's 23 governorates highlighted a humanitarian catastrophe in Yemen after two years of Saudi aggression against the Arab country that has disabled most health care facilities, according to the UN humanitarian office.
"To date, 101,820 suspected cholera cases and 789 deaths have been reported in 19 governorates," WHO spokesman Tarik Jasarevic told Reuters last week.
The WHO has warned that the number of cases could hit 300,000, but the daily number of new ones declined slightly in the week to June 5 to 3,432, compared with 3,651 in the previous seven-day period.