Posted on April 23, 2018 by Ashleigh Cowie

Saudi Arabia’s Ambassador to Yemen Mohammed al-Jaber has confirmed that Houthi militias are detaining 19 oil vessels, preventing them from entering Hodeidah port.

In a statement on twitter al-Jaber said: "The Yemen Comprehensive Humanitarian Support Center (YCHO) is deeply concerned that the Iranian-backed Houthi militias are holding more than 19 oil vessels in the militia-controlled area of al-Mustaqaf, preventing them from entering the port." 

ARX reported last week that Inspections of aid ships were increased after military cargo was found to be smuggled in to the region among the aid. Saudi allies have argued for years that the Houthis use the port of Hodeidah as a tool in their long standing war against the regime in Yemen.  For more information on the situation in Yemen, the history of the Houthis and the political trends in the region view our previous article here: https://arxmaritime.com/news/military-cargo-smuggled-in-to-yemen-in-aid-shipments/

Al-Jaber said he believed the seizure of ships transiting the port is a way for the Houthis to prolong war in the region: “royalties of up to $1 million may be imposed on each ship that allows it to dock in the port, thus prolonging the war and refuelling the war effort. The second scenario is the continued starvation of the Yemeni people and the use of the situation. The third is “the most dangerous, that the Houthis are planning to target the 19 ships in one place to destroy them, which will trigger an environmental disaster in the Red Sea”.

On April 3, a Saudi oil tanker was attacked by Houthi militants in international waters west of Hodeidah port which is under the control of Iran's armed militias.

The spokesman for the Coalition Forces Col. Turki al-Maliki said that the attempt to attack failed after the intervention of one of the naval ships of the alliance.

More to follow....

 

Photo Courtesy: Reuters

Posted in NEWS , middle east , yemen , war in yemen , politics , social unrest

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