Red Cross president in Yemen to assess situation

2015-08-08 17:50
Peter Maurer (AP)

Peter Maurer (AP)

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Sana'a - The president of the International Committee of the Red Cross arrived on Saturday in Yemen's rebel-held capital, Sana'a, amid its months-long civil war as fighting raged elsewhere in the country.

The visit by Peter Maurer is set to last until Monday. A Red Cross statement said it is intended "to highlight the dire humanitarian situation in the country".

The statement added that the Red Cross also is "concerned about attacks on medical facilities and personnel", saying that four Red Cross volunteers have been killed since the conflict began.

Yemenis are suffering from a shortage of food, water and medicine in the Arab world's poorest country. The UN declared its highest-level humanitarian emergency in Yemen on July 1.

A Saudi-led, American-supported coalition began launching airtrikes in March against Shi'ite rebels known as Houthis and their allies.

The fighting in Yemen pits the Houthis and troops loyal to former President Ali Abdullah Saleh against southern separatists, local and tribal militias, Sunni Islamic militants and loyalists of exiled President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi.

Meanwhile on Saturday, fighting erupted between local residents and Houthi forces in the Hazem al-Adeen area of Ibb province, security officials and eyewitnesses said.

The officials say dozens of residents demanded the Houthis leave and the situation escalated into violence. Six people were killed in the fighting, they said.

Fierce fighting also raged between Houthi and anti-Houthi fighters in Taiz, Yemen's third-largest city, and the strategic southern city of Zanjibar, security officials said.

Medical officials in Taiz said the violence killed four civilians and wound six.

All officials spoke on condition of anonymity as they weren't authorised to speak to journalists.

Read more on:    icrc  |  yemen
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