French troops fighting Houthis in Yemen alongside UAE forces, Le Figaro claims

French troops fighting Houthis in Yemen alongside UAE forces, Le Figaro claims

However, a Defense Ministry statement on Friday to the newspaper Ouest-France said Paris is studying sending minesweepers to clear the entrance of the Hodeida port "after the end of military operations".

"The armed forces, which are supported by the Arab coalition have freed the al-Hodeida International Airport from the Houthi militias and the engineering teams have started to clean the airport and its surroundings from mines and bombs", the military said on its official Twitter account.

HRW's Sarah Leah Whitson said Friday "the coalition and Houthi forces, now fighting for Hodeida, have atrocious records abiding by the laws of war".

Emirati forces with Yemeni troops moved in from the south near Hodeida's airport, while others sought to cut off Houthi supply lines to the east, the officials said.

Houthi spokesmen, for their part, have yet to comment on the army's claims.

"I treated him on a bus after he was injured in an air strike".

More than 22 million people in Yemen are in need of aid, including 8.4 million who are at risk of starvation, according to the United Nations, which considers Yemen to be the world's worst humanitarian crisis.

Ghebreyesus added a reminder that the port of Hodeida is "an essential lifeline" for Yemen, saying that "more than 70% of all food, essential medicines and healthcare supplies are brought in through this port".

A second said the military operation will be hard and "complicated" because the aim is to protect airport facilities, buildings and nearby fighter jets.

A defeat for the Houthis in Hodeidah could have ramifications far beyond the city of 600,000.

President Donald Trump's withdrawal from the worldwide nuclear deal and his embrace of nuclear state North Korea has dealt a blow to Tehran and put it under pressure to entrench its interests in Arab countries.

It also says: "Hospitals can not function properly because there is no electricity, generators are not working, or there is no fuel to run them".

The committee issued a series of tweets Friday describing the situation in Hodeida, which is held by Shiite rebels known as Houthis and their allies.

The airstrikes and Houthi bombardment have left more than 10,000 people dead and two million displaced along with devastation of the country's infrastructure.

On Thursday, the UN Security Council demanded that Hodeida port be kept open to vital food shipments but stopped short of backing a Swedish call for a pause in the Saudi-backed offensive to allow for talks on a rebel withdrawal.

Riyadh accused the Houthis of using the port to smuggle Iranian-made weapons, including missiles that have targeted Saudi cities - accusations denied by the group and Tehran. If the Houthis are pushed out, the coalition could get the upper hand in the war.

The war pits the resilient Houthis, highly experienced in mountain warfare, against the Saudi-led coalition with its superior weaponry, including fighter planes.

An worldwide rights group has urged the United Nations Security Council to warn parties to the Yemen war that they will face sanctions if they fail to provide civilians access to desperately needed aid.

On Wednesday, Yemeni forces and the Saudi-led coalition launched a major operation aimed at retaking Al-Hudeidah - and its strategic seaport - from the Houthis, who captured it in 2014.

Earlier this year, the Saudi-led coalition imposed a near-total blockade on the city's port alleging that it was being used as a conduit for arms smuggling to the rebels by its regional arch-rival Iran.