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Iran’s Relief Cargo Plane Ready to Fly to Yemen

21 May 2015 18:49


Iran has prepared a second relief aid cargo to be sent to Yemen, Head of Iran Red Crescent Society (IRCS) Relief and Rescue Organization Nasser Charkhsaz announced, adding that the cargo has already been loaded onto a plane that is ready to fly to the war-stricken country.

“Since 4:00 am this morning, the plane has been ready to fly and we are waiting for the needed coordination to be made by the foreign ministry,” Charkhsaz told FNA on Thursday.

He also announced that Iran’s second relief cargo ship, ‘Arezou’, has docked at Imam Khomeini port in Southern Iran, adding that its loading will start on Friday and will last one week.

Head of Iran Red Crescent Society (IRCS) Relief and Rescue Organization Nasser Charkhsaz
In relevant remarks yesterday, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian announced that the first plane carrying Iran’s aid, including foodstuff, will land in Djibouti, the UN-opted country for sending humanitarian aid to Yemen, on Thursday.

Also earlier reports said that the first Iranian cargo ship carrying humanitarian aid to Yemen would dock at a Djibouti port to be inspected by the United Nations.

The ship which was sent by the Iranian Red Crescent Society to Yemen on May 13, loaded with pharmaceuticals and medical equipment, will then head towards Yemen’s al-Hudayda port after being inspected.

IRCS Managing Director Seyed Amir Mohsen Ziyaee announced Tuesday that the IRCS would send another ship with relief aid to Yemen soon.

“A 12,000-ton shipment of Iran’s relief aids is being prepared to be dispatched to Yemen,” Ziyaee said.

He noted that IRCS cargo planes carrying Iran’ food aid will be dispatched to Djibouti where a relief aid center is set up in the coming days, and said, “Furthermore, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) plans to set up a center in Salalah, Oman, in the coming days and as soon as it becomes ready, Iran’s pharmaceutical aid will be sent (to Oman) through air.”

The IRCS has been trying to dispatch humanitarian aid to Yemen through sea and air, but has so far been unable to do so due to Saudi Arabia’s blockade of the war-ravaged country.

Late in April, Saudi jet fighters shooed away three Iranian cargo planes from Yemen’s airspace. But in the third case they bombed the Sana’a airport control tower and runway seven times to prevent the Iranian defying pilot from landing. The Iranian civilian plane was carrying humanitarian aids, including medical equipment, for the Yemeni people who have been under the Saudi-led airstrikes for over a month now. The cargo plane was due to take humanitarian aid to Yemen and take several civilians, who were critically wounded in the recent Saudi bombings, back to Tehran to receive specialized medical treatment.

Iran had earlier sent five consignments of humanitarian aid to Yemen, including a total of 69 tons of relief, medical, treatment, and consumer items.

Last month, Head of the Yemeni Red Crescent Society Mohammad Ahmad al-Kebab in a letter to Ziayee thanked Iran for the recent humanitarian and medical aid cargoes sent to his country.

“I appreciate the unsparing help and relief operations as well as the humanitarian attempts of the IRCS,” al-Kebab said in his letter.

He expressed the hope that interactions and mutual cooperation between the two countries’ Red Crescent societies would increase in future.

But late in April, the IRCS blasted Saudi Arabia for blocking Iran’s humanitarian aids to Yemen.

“The IRCS humanitarian aid consignments are ready to be dispatched to Yemen, but unfortunately Saudi Arabia prevents their delivery to Yemen,” Shahabeddin Mohammadi Araqi, IRCS deputy managing director for international and humanitarian affairs, said.

Mohammadi Araqi described the Yemeni people’s conditions as critical, and said, “We are in contact with Yemen’s Red Crescent Society and Health Ministry and have included their needs in the new consignment.”

He lamented that planes and ships are not allowed into Yemen’s ports and airports, and said, “Unfortunately, the Saudi government has prevented the dispatch of aids to Yemen.”

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