Saudi Arabia says new Yemen missile intercepted

Emirati minister of state for foreign affairs Anwar Gargash speaks during a press conference in Dubai

Emirati minister of state for foreign affairs Anwar Gargash speaks during a press conference in Dubai

They are backed by Emirati troops on the ground and Saudi and UAE warplanes and Apache attack helicopters.

UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash said: "We are waiting for the Houthis to realize the sort of military and psychological blow that they got with the airport. we are giving them time to decide if they want to save the city. and pull out". He said four of the dead were women.

Dozens of Houthi gunmen were killed, including field commanders during the raid of the Yemeni Resistance Forces on the Hodeidah Airport.

The U.N. said on Monday that over 5,200 families have fled for their lives away from the fighting since the Saudi-led coalition started its campaign on June 1 wrest Hodeida from Houthi rebels.

The ambassador said that the Houthi militias have exploited the Hodeida port to prolong the war and the suffering of the Yemeni people.

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The strategic city is located on the Red Sea coast with its port as one of the main entry points for essential supplies to the country, which is suffering the most pressing humanitarian crisis in the world, according to the UN.

Earlier in the day, witnesses said another airstrike targeted a tractor driver and his assistant in eastern Hodeida.

Intense fighting erupted Tuesday around the airport in rebel-held Hodeida in western Yemen as Saudi-backed government forces mounted a new offensive to capture the area, military sources said.

Col. Turki Al-Malki, spokesman of the Coalition forces to restore legitimacy in Yemen, said that the missile was launched deliberately from Saada governorate of Yemen to target densely populated civilian areas.

It lies just 8km from the city's port, through which three-quarters of Yemen's imports pass, providing a lifeline for some 22 million people dependent on aid.

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"The political moves that are being proposed are being supported by us. but the situation is now very volatile", the Russian envoy said. Around two-thirds of the country's population of 27 million relies on aid and 8.4 million are at risk of starving. While the alliance has been able to recover areas in southern Yemen, the Houthis still control Sana'a and territories in the north, and frequently fire ballistic missiles into Saudi Arabia, which has accused Iran of supplying such weapons.

The Houthis seized control of Sanaa in September 2014, later pushing south toward the port city of Aden.

The battle for Hudaydah was the Saudi-led coalition's largest military operation since it intervened in the Yemeni conflict in 2015.

The Houthis, meanwhile, have laid land mines, killing and wounding civilians, targeted religious minorities and imprisoned opponents.

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