UN Urges ‘Humanitarian Pause’ to Deliver Aid to Yemeni Citizens
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – The UN on Tuesday called for a “humanitarian” truce in airstrikes and fighting in Yemen as it seeks to deliver aid to civilians trapped in the capital Sana’a.
“I ... sent a message asking for a truce, a peace pause, a humanitarian pause, for the parties to stop shooting, stop fighting, stop airstrikes, so the people can go to hospitals, can go to seek safety ... and go to also find a place for water and food,” UN humanitarian coordinator Jamie McGoldrick told reporters in Geneva by phone from Sana’a, AP reported.
“Our ability to get to people over the last five days has been impeded because of the airstrikes, because of the fighting, and our life-saving support activities were blocked,” he said.
“What happened... because of our inability to move in the city during the five days — the UN agencies, Red Cross and NGOs — we were unable to do our life-saving treatments,” McGoldrick said.
“Now the uncertainty continues and despite what happened yesterday, we don’t know if we can start doing our operations or whether we have to wait for some time,” he added.
McGoldrick said a UN team would travel to Riyadh “quite soon.”
Saudis have stepped up attacks on Yemen, in particular Sana’a, following the death of their ally, the former Yemeni dictator Ali Abdullah Saleh. Saleh was killed after betraying the Yemeni revolution and allying with the Saudi-led coalition which has been pounding the country for the past three years.
The Yemeni capital witnessed street clashes between the Houthi Ansarullah Movement and Saleh forces in recent days but the country’s army spokesman Brigadier General Sharaf Luqman said on Monday that security has been restored in the whole Sana’a province.
Yemen’s defenseless people have been under massive attacks by the Saudi-led coalition for the past three years but Riyadh has reached none of its objectives in Yemen so far.
Over 14,000 Yemenis, including thousands of women and children, have lost their lives in the deadly military campaign.