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UN scrambles to avert coalition attack on Yemen port

AFP  |  United Nations 

The met behind closed doors today to try to avert an attack by the Saudi-led coalition on a key port in that provides a lifeline for humanitarian aid.

Britain requested the urgent talks after telling aid agencies in the area of the rebel-held that an attack was imminent by forces of the

The has warned that up to 250,000 people were at risk if the coalition moves ahead with an all-out offensive to take the port, which is a major entry point for commercial supplies and aid.

UN said there were "intense negotiations" by his UN on the fate of the port.

"I hope that there will be a way to avoid the military confrontation in Hodeida," Guterres told reporters.

During the closed session, Griffiths was to brief council members by video-conference from along with UN

"We recognise the UAE's security concerns and these need to be addressed," British told reporters ahead of the meeting. "But we are also worried about the humanitarian situation." The coalition maintains that the port is used by Yemen's Huthi rebels to smuggle weapons.

Griffiths told the council in April that he was working on a peace plan for but that any military action risked derailing that effort.

"It's very important for us that the council comes together and gives a common signal and gives a very clear political message to the actors involved," said Dutch

"What we should not see is an attack on " More than 22 million people in are in need of aid -- 8.4 million of whom are on the brink of starvation, according to the which considers Yemen to be the world's worst humanitarian crisis.

Since 2015, has been leading a military campaign to push back the Huthis and restore the internationally recognized government to power.

The conflict has left nearly 10,000 people dead in Yemen, already the Arab world's poorest country.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, June 11 2018. 22:15 IST