The Latest: Saudi Arabia, UAE pledge $500 million Yemen aid
SANAA, Yemen (AP) — The Latest on the situation in Yemen (all times local):
2 p.m. Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have pledged $500 million in aid to assist millions of Yemenis at risk of starvation.
The announcement comes just days after David Beasley, head of the U.N. World Food Program, visited Yemen and told the U.N. Security Council that as many as 12 million of the 28 million Yemenis “are just one step away from famine.”
The general supervisor of King Salman’s Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center, Abdullah al-Rabeeah, told reporters that the new initiative aims to provide food assistance to some 12 million Yemenis.
Saudi Arabia and the UAE, at war against Yemen’s Houthi rebels since March 2015, announced the initiative on Tuesday from the Saudi capital, Riyadh.
Tens of thousands of people are believed to have been killed in the war, and two-thirds of Yemen’s population relies on aid.
Yemeni officials and witnesses say fighting between Saudi-led coalition forces and Shiite rebels has flared up again around the Red Sea port city of Hodeida despite U.N. calls for a cease-fire there.
They say coalition airstrikes hit the rebels, known as Houthis, in and around Hodeida late Monday. Earlier, the rebels said they’d fired a ballistic missile the previous night into Saudi Arabia in response to an attempted border incursion and another airstrike.
The officials spoke on condition of anonymity as they weren’t authorized to talk to reporters; the witnesses did so for fear for their safety.
The coalition has waged war against the rebels since March 2015; tens of thousands of people have been killed.
The U.N. is trying to end the conflict and has proposed a new resolution.