Iran to send cargo ship to Yemen

Iranian cargo ship to sail to Yemen after Saudi Arabia and Shiite Houthis agreed on ceasefire

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Updated Jul 28, 2015

Following the acceptance of a five-day ceasefire by Saudi Arabia and Iranian backed Shiite Houthi militias, Iran will send a cargo ship to Yemen.

Iran claims the ship’s cargo is comprised 2,500 tons of humanitarian aid including food staples and medicine, Reuters reported.

“[The] Iranian cargo ship will set sail for the rebel-held Yemeni port of Hodeida on Sunday evening,” Iran's Tasnim news agency said.

Houthis agreed on a five-day humanitarian ceasefire which was proposed by Saudi Arabia and is planned to start in Yemen on Tuesday.

The ceasefire was announced by Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir during a joint press conference with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry after talks in Paris on Friday.

"The ceasefire will end should Houthis or their allies not live up to the agreement, this is a chance for the Houthis to show that they care about their people and they care about the Yemeni people," al-Jubeir said.

Kerry also commented stating that the ceasefire does not mean peace has been reached in the country. 

Iran’s decision to send cargo ship is likely to fan further tensions with Saudi-led forces blockading the country.

Since the start of civil war in Yemen, Saudi-led coalition has been accusing Iran of smuggling weapons and ammunition to Houthi rebels.

Coalition forces destroyed Sanaa airport’s runways last month to prevent an Iranian plane landing. Tehran said it was carrying aid.

Iran rejects claims of arming the Houthi rebels but Gulf countries believe Iran is using Shiite Muslims to gain power in the Arabian Peninsula.

Aid agencies warned of a humanitarian crisis in Yemen since 90 percent of its food is imported.

More than 1,300 people have been killed in clashes since the start of Saudi-led coalition operations, awaking an international concern about humanitarian disaster, leaving locals homeless and causing shortages of food, medicine and fuel.

The ceasefire was agreed by the Iran-backed Houthis after heavy air strikes have started since Friday, targeting Houthi strongholds in the north provinces of Yemen.

TRTWorld and agencies