GENEVA - The United Nations regained access to a grain facility near Yemen's Hodeida port on Tuesday, potentially allowing an increase in food aid to millions at risk of starvation after years of devastating war, humanitarian officials said. The breakthrough was announced by U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres at a humanitarian pledging conference in Geneva aimed at averting famine in Yemen. But talks aimed at securing a pullout from Hodeida by Iran-aligned Houthi forces holding the city and Saudi-led coalition forces appeared stalled again despite U.N. efforts to clear the way to wider negotiations on ending the conflict. Western diplomats said an inspection of the grain stores in the port had been carried out but the warring sides still needed to agree on which road could be used to transport to transport supplies from the site to needy recipients. Guterres said $2.6 billion has been pledged so far toward a U.N. appeal of $4.2 billion this year for Yemen, where 24 million people, or 80 percent of the population of the Arabian Peninsula nation, is in need of aid.
Feb-26-2019, 23:42:19 GMT