GENEVA: A slowdown in fighting in Yemen’s Hodeida province has allowed the UN to deliver more than 3,000 tonnes of food to two areas for the first time in six months, the World Food Programme said on Tuesday.
Tuhayta and Darahimi districts in southern Hodeida last received humanitarian aid in July, when a WFP truck delivering relief goods was “hit”, agency spokesman Herve Verhoosel said, without elaborating on the nature of the July incident.
The deliveries so far to the districts include more than 3,300 metric tonnes of food.
“This can be thanks to an inconsistent de-escalation over recent days following the December peace talks in Stockholm,” Verhoosel said in a statement.
The rebel-held port in Hodeida city — through which more than 80 per cent of imports and humanitarian aid pass — was for months the main front line in the Yemeni conflict after government forces launched an offensive to capture it in June from Iran-backed Houthi rebels.
Yemen’s government forces are supported by a Saudi-backed coalition.
The United Nations has said the Hodeida truce has largely held since it came into force on Dec 18 but there have been delays in the agreed pullback of rebel and government forces.
Since the Saudi-led military coalition intervened in support of the government in March 2015, the conflict has killed nearly 10,000 people and unleashed the world’s worst humanitarian crisis, according to the United Nations.
UN officials say 80 per cent of the population — 24 million people — are in need of aid and nearly 10 million are just one step away from famine.