Somalia: Hundreds arriving by boats in Puntland amid pause in Yemen fighting
BOSSASO, Somalia, May 13, 2015 (Garowe Online)-Puntland government officials and medics have received more than 1500 refugees fleeing Yemen violence at a seaport on the Gulf of Aden amid humanitarian pause in Impoverished Yemen on Wednesday, Garowe Online reports.
The desperate people in their hundreds arrived by a boat, pleading with aid workers and local authorities to attend to aging people and children and recounting harrowing tales.
Shamis-3 boat carried Somalis fleeing the fighting and hundreds of Yemeni and Ethiopian refugees from Mukalla port.
Puntland’s Minister for Ports and Marine transport, Deputy Minister of Interior, Bossaso mayor and Red Crescent and IOM officials oversaw the disembarking of the largest number of people seeking refuge in the country’s northeastern state in recent weeks.
Since the onset of Yemen’s descent into deadly conflict in April, Puntland officials say, the huge influx stands at 5083 including foreigners.
Deputy Interior Minister Qoob-Deero told reporters that the boat with 1723 people of whom 763 are children and 581 are women has docked at Bossaso port.
Somalia President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud earlier on April 29 unveiled that preparations to evacuate as many as thousands of Somali refugees by planes and ships were underway.
Mohamud added that security agencies will keep vigil on terrorist elements aiming to mix themselves with worried Yemeni refugees.
Precarious truce is said to be holding after Saudi-led coalition of Arab countries and Houthis agreed to a five-day humanitarian ceasefire.