UN says delivering aid to Yemen port city during attack, considers airlift

File photo showing workers unloading wheat provided by UNICEF from a cargo ship docked in the western Yemen port of Hodeidah, January 27, 2018. (AFP)
Updated 13 June 2018
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UN says delivering aid to Yemen port city during attack, considers airlift

  • UN in Yemen is drawing up options to ensure aid delivery to Yemenis “in case of a siege of Hodeidah.
  • The United Nations delivered food and other vital aid supplies to the Yemeni port of Hodeidah Wednesday.

GENEVA: The United Nations delivered food and other vital aid supplies to the Yemeni port of Hodeidah on Wednesday even as a Saudi-led coalition carried out naval shelling and air strikes on the city, the top UN humanitarian official in Yemen told Reuters.
Lise Grande, UN resident and humanitarian coordinator for Yemen, speaking by telephone from the capital Sanaa, said that her office was drawing up options to ensure aid delivery to millions of Yemenis “in case of a possible siege of Hodeidah,” including a humanitarian airlift.
“We are distributing food, hygiene and nutritional supplies, shelter materials. We have a ship offloading food even as shelling and bombing is happening,” Grande said. “The UN is already taking steps in case of a possible siege including airlift capability.”


Assad pledges to regain control of northern Syria by force if needed

Updated 24 June 2018
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Assad pledges to regain control of northern Syria by force if needed

  • Damascus said it rejected the presence of Turkish and US forces around the northern town of Manbij
  • “We will fight with them (rebels) and return control by force," said Assad

MOSCOW: The Syrian army will regain control of the country’s north by force if rebels there refuse to surrender, President Bashar Assad said in an interview with Russian television channel NTV on Sunday.
Assad’s comments come after Damascus said it rejected the presence of Turkish and US forces around the northern town of Manbij, a day after soldiers of the two countries began patrolling the area.
“We have chosen two paths: the first and most important one is reconciliation... The second path is to attack terrorists if they don’t surrender and refuse to make peace,” Assad said in the interview.
“We will fight with them (rebels) and return control by force. It is certainly not the best option for us, but it’s the only way to get control of the country,” said Assad, responding to a question about the northern part of Syria where rebel groups backed by Turkey hold some territory.
Assad has previously promised to also squeeze rebels from the country’s south, and the Syrian army this week dropped barrel bombs on opposition areas of the country’s southwest on Friday for the first time in a year.
Assad said in the same interview on Sunday that Syria would not accept any Western money to help rebuild the country, which is shattered after seven years of war.
“We have enough strength to rebuild the country. If we don’t have money — we will borrow from our friends, from Syrians living abroad,” Assad said.