SANA’A (Dispatches) – A senior Yemeni official has dismissed the UN Security Council’s call for the immediate release of an Emirati-flagged vessel, stressing that the ship was carrying various munitions and military equipment when it was seized in Yemen’s territorial waters earlier this month.
“The Rwabee was neither loaded with dates nor children’s toys. It was rather carrying weapons destined for extremist groups who jeopardize the lives of ordinary citizens,” Hussein al-Azi, deputy foreign minister in Yemen’s National Salvation Government, said in a series of posts published on his Twitter page.
On Friday, the 15-member Security Council “demanded the immediate release of the vessel and its crew and “underscored the necessity of ensuring the crew’s safety and well-being.”
The Council highlighted “the importance of freedom of navigation in the Gulf of Aden and Red Sea” and urged “all parties to de-escalate the situation in Yemen,” including by working with the UN’s special envoy to return to the negotiating table.
Azi said the Rwabee belongs to a country involved in the devastating Saudi war on the Yemeni nation, highlighting that the vessel trespassed into Yemen’s territorial waters in contravention of international law.
He expressed regret that the UN body is misleading the world public opinion, and is outrageously demonstrating solidarity with killer regimes and violators of international law.
Saudi Arabia, backed by the United States and regional allies, launched the war on Yemen in March 2015, with the goal of bringing the government of former Yemeni president Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi back to power and crushing the popular Ansarullah resistance movement.
The war has left hundreds of thousands of Yemenis dead and displaced millions more. It has also destroyed Yemen’s infrastructure and spread famine and infectious diseases there.
Despite heavily-armed Saudi Arabia’s incessant bombardment of the impoverished country, the Yemeni armed forces and the Popular Committees have grown steadily in strength against the Saudi-led invaders and left Riyadh and its allies bogged down in the country.
In a latest development, Yemeni Armed Forces have launched retaliatory missile and drone strikes on places of gathering belonging to the UAE- and Saudi-backed mercenaries and the Daesh terrorists in flashpoint Ma’rib Province, inflicting heavy losses on them.
In a series of tweets on Friday, Brigadier General Yahya Saree, spokesman for the Yemeni Armed Forces, said the raids prevented the advance of the militants towards Ma’rib’s Haraib and A’ain districts.
He added that four Yemeni ballistic missiles and a drone hit the enemy positions accurately during the operation, killing and wounding dozens of them as well as destroying their armored vehicles.