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Newshour, Red Cross pulls 71 staff out of Yemen

Newshour, Red Cross pulls 71 staff out of Yemen”

As many as 600,000 civilians now live in and around Hodeidah, which lies on Yemen's Red Sea coast, the United Nations said.

"In a prolonged worst case, we fear that as many as 250,000 people may lose everything - even their lives", she said.

Government forces have been trying to seize rebel-held Hodeida, a vital lifeline from which most of Yemen's population gets food and medicine.

"The ICRC is calling on all parties to the conflict to provide it with concrete, solid and actionable guarantees so that it can continue working in Yemen".

Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and their allies entered the war in 2015 to try to drive back Houthi rebels who forced a Saudi-backed government into exile in 2014.

About 450 ICRC employees remain in Yemen, including dozens of expatriate staff, spokeswoman Marie-Claire Feghali said.

The 71 people withdrawn from Yemen represent more than half of the ICRC's international staff in the country
The 71 people withdrawn from Yemen represent more than half of the ICRC’s international staff in the country

Dominik Stillhart, ICRC's director of operations, said that ICRC's staff activities have been "blocked, threatened and directly targeted in recent weeks, and we see a vigorous attempt to instrumentalize our organization as a pawn in the conflict".

"We have received threats from all sides". Lahoud, a Lebanese national, was on his way to visit a prison on behalf of the aid group in the southwestern Yemeni city of Taiz when unknown gunmen attacked his vehicle.

The first missile fell down inside the Yemeni territories while the other fell down in an unpopulated desert, Saudi Press Agency (SPA) said, adding no casualties have been reported. The United Nations estimates that more than 10,000 people have been killed, and three-quarters of the population depend on global aid.

The deal also says that Saudi and UAE armed forces would also halt their bombing of Yemeni towns and cities, which has killed thousands of civilians.

The plan, which has not been made public and could be modified, is the latest effort to end Yemen's three-year-old civil war, which has spawned one of the world's worst humanitarian crises.



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