Yemen blockade `killing` civilians: humanitarian chief

The Saudi-led military coalition`s blockade of Yemen is "killing" as many civilians as the war, the head of aid group Doctors Without Borders said Thursday during a visit to the country.

AFP| Updated: Jul 30, 2015, 18:34 PM IST

Riyadh: The Saudi-led military coalition`s blockade of Yemen is "killing" as many civilians as the war, the head of aid group Doctors Without Borders said Thursday during a visit to the country.

By preventing medicine from reaching the sick, the blockade is "killing as (many people as) the current conflict," Joanne Liu told AFP in a telephone interview from Yemen`s rebel-held capital Sanaa.

It was the latest warning about the humanitarian situation in Yemen, four months after the coalition began bombing pro-Iranian Huthi rebels who seized territory in the already impoverished nation.

A UN aid ship last week reached Yemen`s southern port of Aden, and coalition aid planes landed there after anti-rebel forces drove the Huthis and their allies from the city.

Liu, who visited the rebel-held north and the southern district of Taez, said more needed to be done.

She said she understood the need for the coalition to enforce a blockade of Yemen, where the Huthis are under a UN Security Council arms embargo.

"But we need to put in place ways to get supplies to come in, in a safe way, and people can get their medicine and not die" of easily treatable diseases, said Liu, international president of the Swiss-based charity.