Now that former President of Yemen Ali Abdullah Saleh is dead, Iran’s direct support for the Houthis can grow in importance in the coming months.
The Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen asked the UN to take control of the country’s main airport in territory run by their Houthi rebel enemies after global pleas for humanitarian aid.
Nearly 2,000 people have already succumbed to one of the worst recorded outbreaks of cholera in modern history, with over 400,000 having contracted the disease, according to the WHO.
Tensions have been rising since a Saudi-led coalition intervened in Yemen’s civil war in 2015, backing government forces fighting Iran-allied Houthi rebels.
With no end in sight to the war in Yemen, journalists fear they will continue to face risks that threaten their safety and freedom.
The Yemeni government rejected the new council formed by several senior figures that seek the secession of southern Yemen, saying it would deepen divisions.
Some 6.7 million people in Yemen are classified in phase 4 on an international scale of food security, with phase 5 constituting a famine.
Officials said it did not appear that the Iran-backed Houthis would come to the negotiating table under the current circumstances and there needed to be more military pressure on the group.
Khoukha and the nearby city of Hodeidah are controlled by Iran-allied Houthi fighters who in 2014 overran Yemen’s capital Sanaa and forced the Saudi-backed government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi to flee into exile.
The US will limit arms sales, but continue assisting Saudi Arabia in the Yemen campaign, despite concerns that Saudi Arabia is misusing its power.
The report to the UNSC also said a military coalition led by Saudi Arabia had violated humanitarian law by bombing a civilian home in Al-Mahala village.
The UN report said the coalition was to blame for 60% of child deaths and injuries in the conflict last year, killing 510 and wounding 667.
The UN has said the economy is close to collapse and many areas are at risk of famine, a word the agency uses sparingly and only when certain criteria have been met.
A two-third majority vote by the 193-member UN General Assembly can suspend a state from the Geneva-based UN Human Rights Council.