1st commercial ship since March docks in Aden
A commercial ship docked Friday in Aden, a port official said, the first vessel of its kind to reach the southern Yemeni city since it was overrun by anti-government rebels in March.
The Venus, operated by United Arab Shipping Co., had a cargo of 350 containers of products ordered by businesses in Aden, which was retaken by progovernment forces last month, said port deputy director Aref alShaabi.
“This signals the return of life to the port of Aden and this will benefit the city and southern provinces” also retaken by loyalist troops in recent weeks, Shaabi told AFP.
Shiite Huthi rebels and troops loyal to former president Ali Abdullah Saleh attacked Aden in March after taking the capital Sanaa unopposed last year.
Their advance south prompted Yemen’s President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi to flee to Riyadh and sparked a Saudi-led aerial bombing campaign on rebel targets across the country.
In recent weeks, bolstered by what military sources said was heavy equipment and troops provided by the coalition, as well as Yemeni fighters trained in Saudi Arabia, pro- government forces have retaken Aden, as well four other southern provinces from the rebels.
The loyalists are currently battling anti-government forces for control of Yemen’s third city, Taez, which has been described as the gateway to the rebel-held capital.
Shaabi said other ships were expected in Aden, Yemen’s main port, in the coming days.
Since the city’s recapture, several transport planes carrying humanitarian aid have landed at the city’s repaired airport.