MOSCOW, June 14. /TASS/. Moscow is highly concerned about an offense on the Yemeni port city of Hodeida launched by forces loyal to Yemeni President Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi with the support of the Saudi Arabia-led coalition, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Wednesday.
"News about an offensive on the Red Sea port of Hodeida, launched by forces loyal to Yemeni President Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi with sea and air support from the Saudi-led coalition, cause serious concern," the statement reads. "These developments cause particular concern as Hodeida is an important transport and logistics center through which the largest part of food, medicines and basic necessities for civilians are brought to the country. If military activities in the area cut off this supply line, Yemeni civilians, who have been facing numerous predicaments, will find themselves literally on the brink of death and will have to make a terrible choice whether to die in bombing and shelling attacks or from hunger and diseases," the Russian Foreign Ministry said.
The statement adds that such developments had led to numerous casualties on both sides. "It is hard to imagine how many of those taking part in the battle of Hodeida will be killed. According to information coming from the region, the first days of the operation resulted in hundreds of fatalities on both sides," the Russian Foreign Ministry noted, adding that "all this confirms our initial concerns that the Hodeida offensive will bring catastrophic consequences to the entire Yemen."
"We deeply regret that United Nations Special Envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths’ request for additional time to prevent such a scenario was rejected," the statement said.
The ministry pointed out that the Hodeida offensive undermined prospects for finding a political solution to the Yemen crisis. "It is estimated that the hardest blow will fall on prospects for finding a political solution to the Yemen crisis, while we see no alternative to that, particularly as the United Nations’ has recently put forward a number of noteworthy ideas aimed at putting an end to the armed confrontation and bring the warring Yemeni parties to the negotiating table," the statement adds.
"For our part, we call for a prompt cessation of hostilities in Yemen so that there will be a chance to implement the global community’s peace initiatives," the Russian Foreign Ministry concluded.