Four UAE soldiers die in helicopter crash in Yemen

Four UAE soldiers die in helicopter crash in Yemen

Four UAE soldiers die in helicopter crash in Yemen

The United Nations denied it had received any formal request from Saudi Arabia to take control of Yemen's main airport, dismissing Gulf state's call to do so and asserting that the parties to the conflict are responsible for solving the crisis.

On Friday, UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric called on the rival sides to allow humanitarian aid access, including through Sanaa airport which has been closed to all but limited UN flights for a year.

The Saudi-led coalition is fighting the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels from the air and on the ground.

"The closure of Sanaa airport and the limitation of flights to exclusively those carrying aid was due to concerns for the safety of civilian travel and commercial flights, as well as the smuggling of weapons by the Huthis", al-Maliki said in a statement carried by the official SPA news agency.

YEMEN-CHOLERA

The armed Houthi movement and their foes in Yemen's civil war, the Saudi-led coalition, on Saturday gave conflicting accounts of a Houthi attempt to attack shipping in the Red Sea port of al-Mokha.

The UAE has paid tribute to the four Emirati soldiers who were killed in a helicopter crash in Yemen on the weekend. Current death toll is more than 10.000 people, while humanitarian disaster escalated with a starvation and the cholera outbreak of more than 300.000 recorded cases of infection.

Residents of Shabwa province, mostly in the hands of the army after an offensive this month against Al-Qaeda, reported a helicopter crash on Friday night which killed at least two soldiers. Initial reports issued by the Saudi Press Agency said the soldiers sustained "minor injuries" following an emergency landing.

Mohamed al-Bakheit, a member of the Houthi political council, said he had no comment to make about the allegations.

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