Saudi media reports on the morning of Wednesday, June 13 (local time), that the battle for Al-Hudaydah has begun. According to media reports, Saudi- and UAE-led coalition troops started the assault after the UAE-imposed deadline for rebels to withdraw from the city passed overnight. The attack on Al-Hudaydah may trigger a humanitarian crisis, according to UN officials, as the city serves as the port of entry for aid materials bound for Houthi-held territories. UN officials have stated that tens of thousands of people could be killed if the situation turns into a lengthy siege; aid agencies have predicted that 200,000 people may be displaced by the fighting. Additional clashes between National Resistance Forces - as part of the Saudi-led coalition - and Houthi rebel fighters are expected in the area in the coming weeks.
Yemen is engaged in a complex and deadly conflict, ongoing since Houthi rebels entered into a civil war with the Yemeni government, supported by a Saudi-led coalition, in 2015. The Saudi-led coalition has carried out thousands of airstrikes in Yemen since its intervention began. Hundreds of Yemeni civilians have been killed in the strikes, which have hit schools, hospitals, and markets, in addition to Houthi militant positions and personnel. In total, more than 10,000 Yemenis have died in the fighting and some 3 million have been displaced.
Due to poor security conditions, many Western governments strongly advise their citizens against all travel to Yemen. Travel to the country should only be considered with proper security protocols in place. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel.