December 27-January 4: Houthis obstruct aid & fail to implement ceasefire terms, coalition recruits Sudanese child soldiers


An interactive feature in the New York Times illustrates the Saudi-led coalition’s efforts to destroy Yemen’s food-production infrastructure, including airstrikes on farms and fisheries.


According to an investigative report by the New York Times, Saudi Arabia has recruited thousands of child soldiers from Sudan for the war in Yemen, many of them survivors or victims of the brutal civil war in Darfur. “In interviews, five fighters who have returned from Yemen and another about to depart said that children made up at least 20 percent of their units. Two said children were more than 40 percent.” Under US law, it is illegal for the government to issue arms export licenses or provide military assistance to states that recruit child soldiers.


Houthi leadership reported that it had removed its forces from the port of al-Hudaydah and handed over control of the port to local administrators and the Coast Guard, as required by the UN-monitored Stockholm Agreements. Government officials, however, said that the Houthis had placed loyalists inside the Coast Guard and local port administration, making their claims of compliance meaningless. “It’s a stage play in which the Houthis handed over the port to their fighters after they put on coast guard uniforms,” Hudaydah’s governor told the AP.

UN officials responsible for monitoring the implementation of the ceasefire in al-Hudaydah reported that the Houthis had failed to remove their forces from the Hudaydah-San’a highway, which has been designated a “humanitarian corridor.”


The World Food Program issued an unprecedented ultimatum to the Houthi leadership, threatening to suspend some food aid deliveries to Houthi-controlled northern Yemen unless leadership takes decisive action “within 10 days” to curb the militia’s theft and diversion of aid intended for starving people.

The Washington Post’s Sudarsan Raghavan interviewed former detainees and others to expose the system of violent repression and surveillance that the Houthis use to maintain control in San’a and other areas under their control.


In an op-ed in the Washington Post, Yemeni ambassador Ahmed Bin Mubarak and antiquities expert Deborah Lehr urged US authorities to take action to close the US art market to those trafficking in stolen Yemeni art and artifacts.


Coalition forces have been dispatched to a remote area of Shabwah Governorate after locals reportedly interfered with an attempt by the UAE-backed Shabwah Elite Forces to capture alleged AQAP fighters.