January 18-23: Coalition captures al-Mokha, government criticizes UN envoy

Wednesday, January 18The World Bank announced a plan to provide $450 million in grants to institutions in Yemen providing food, income, and health care to people in need across the country.

Houthi artillery fire killed six civilians in the city of Ta’iz, according to the AP.

Monday, January 23 Coalition and pro-government forces announced that they have captured the Red Sea port city of al-Mokha after heavy fighting. Officials said that most of the city’s civilian population fled during the fighting, leaving the city “nearly abandoned.” Yemen already has more than 3 million displaced people, few of whom have reliable access to food, water, or medical care.

Saudi Arabia’s Al Arabiya news organization reports that coalition and pro-government forces have captured important positions in Hajjah, one of the governorates that lies between San’a and the Saudi border.

According to a Pentagon spokesperson, US military drone strikes killed five AQAP fighters over the weekend in al-Baydha. The strikes, which did not require presidential approval, are the first to take place under the Trump administration. It isn’t clear whether these strikes resulted in any civilian casualties.

Tuesday, January 24 The foreign minister of President Hadi’s government-in-exile told press that the UN special envoy’s recent trip to San’a to meet with Houthi-GPC authorities was “unacceptable and inconsistent with his duties as envoy.” This is a strange complaint, as the special envoy’s job is to meet with the warring parties.