UN monitoring team verifies Yemen's Houthi withdrawal from Hodeidah ports

Source: Xinhua| 2019-05-13 01:07:50|Editor: ZX
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SANAA, May 12 (Xinhua) -- The United Nations monitoring team in Yemen on Sunday verified Houthi withdrawal from three ports of Hodeidah.

"The first day of the redeployment of Houthi forces from the three ports of Hodeidah, Salif and Ras-Issa went in accordance with established plans," Michael Lollesgaard, chair of the Redeployment Coordination Committee, said in a statement.

"All three ports were monitored simultaneously by UN teams as the military forces left the ports and the Coast Guard took over responsibility for security," Lollesgaard said in the statement by the office of the UN Special Envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths.

"The formal verification by the UN of this first redeployment will take place at the three ports on Tuesday," he added.

On Saturday, the Houthi rebels unilaterally withdrew from the three ports of the Yemeni Red Sea port city of Hodeidah.

UN spokesman Farhan Haq confirmed to reporters at the UN headquarters in New York on Saturday that the Houthi withdrawal "has begun."

The long-delayed UN-sponsored Stockholm Agreement, the first step toward a comprehensive political solution, was reached in December 2018 and focused on the port city of Hodeidah, the lifeline for Yemen's most commercial imports and humanitarian aid.

Hodeidah has been the focus of clashes since 2017.

The government forces, backed by the Saudi-led coalition, have advanced to the southern outskirts of the port city, but the forces have halted a major offensive to recapture Hodeidah to pave the way for peace efforts.