Yemen-bound Iran ship docks in Djibouti; WFP to deliver aid

Tehran agreed this week to allow an international inspection of the vessel, the Iran Shahed, averting a potential showdown with Saudi-led forces.

By (Reuters)

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Published: Sun 24 May 2015, 9:40 PM

Last updated: Thu 25 Jun 2015, 10:17 PM

London —  An Iranian aid ship docked on Friday in Djibouti, where its cargo will be inspected by the United Nations before being moved to conflict-torn Yemen, Iran’s semi-official Fars news agency reported.

“The ship docked a few minutes ago in Djibouti,” Fars said. “The ship entered Djibouti waters yesterday and after inspection by the international organisation will head towards Yemen.”

Tehran agreed this week to allow an international inspection of the vessel, the Iran Shahed, averting a potential showdown with Saudi-led forces who are enforcing searches of ships entering Yemeni ports to stop arms reaching Houthi rebels.

Iran backs the dominant Houthi militia in Yemen’s civil war while Saudi Arabia and its allies have carried out almost two months of air raids against them and want Yemen’s president reinstated.

The ship had originally been bound for the Yemen’s port of Hodaida, but its aid cargo will now be delivered by the World Food Programme, the UN agency said on Friday.

“The cargo of the ship will be handed over to WFP in Djibouti and will be transferred to WFP-chartered vessels for shipment to the Yemeni ports of Hodaida and/or (the southern port city of) Aden,”  — WFP spokeswoman Abeer Etefa said.

“It will be delivered to humanitarian partners on the ground for distribution.”
Reuters



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