emen’s Houthi authorities have ordered the United States and British staff of the United Nations and Sanaa-based humanitarian organisations to leave the country within a month.
A document and a Houthi official said on Wednesday.
The decision followed the strike of the United States and Britain, with support from other nations, against military targets of the Iran-aligned group.
The group had been launching attacks on commercial ships in the Red Sea that are linked to Israel.
The U.S. government last week likewise returned the Houthis to a list of terrorist groups as Washington tries to stem attacks on international shipping in the Red Sea.
The Houthis said their attacks are in solidarity with the Palestinians as Israel bombards Gaza.
“The ministry … would like to stress that you must inform officials and workers with the United States and British citizenships to prepare to leave the country within 30 days”
This was said by Peter Hawkins in a letter sent by the Houthi foreign ministry to the UN’s acting humanitarian coordinator in Yemen.
The letter also ordered foreign organisations to not hire American and British citizens for Yemen’s operations, Houthi top negotiator Mohammed Abdulsalam confirmed the letter’s authenticity to Reuters.
A British national, in the Hawkins office did not respond to a request for comment.
The United States embassy said in a statement it was aware of reports about the letter.
However, “cannot speak on behalf of the United Nations or humanitarian organizations in Yemen as to what they may have received from Houthi ‘authorities’”
The British embassy said staff had not yet been told to leave and the mission was in close contact with the United Nations on the issue.
“The United Nation provided vital assistance to the Yemeni people … via the very sea routes that the Houthis are jeopardising”
In addition “Nothing should be done that hinders their ability to deliver,” the British mission in Yemen said in a statement.
The Houthi movement controls much of Yemen after nearly a decade of war against a United States-backed and Saudi-led coalition.
The war shifted to a “no-war, no-peace” stalemate as the fighting largely stopped, but both parties failed to renew formally a United Nation-brokered ceasefire.
United States and British warplanes, ships, and submarines have launched dozens of air strikes across Yemen in retaliation for Houthi attacks.
Equally Container vessels have been forced to divert from the Red Sea, being the fastest freight route from Asia to Europe.
The United States and British forces on Tuesday targeted a Houthi underground storage site as well as missile and surveillance capabilities, the Pentagon said.