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Yemen announces new phase in pro-Gaza retaliatory operations

This video grab shows spokesman for the Yemeni Armed Forces Yahya Saree addressing a pro-Palestine rally in the capital Sana'a on May 3, 2024.

The Yemeni army has declared the initiation of a fresh phase in Yemen's retaliatory operations, carried out in solidarity with the Palestinians facing the Israeli genocidal war on Gaza.

In a statement on Friday, Yahya Saree, a spokesman for the Yemeni Armed Forces, announced “the commencement of the fourth phase of escalation.”

The statement noted that the decision comes in solidarity with the Palestinians, amid an expected Israeli invasion of the southern city of Rafah where nearly more than half of Gaza's population of 2.4 have sought shelter from Israeli strikes elsewhere in Gaza.

According to the statement, the Yemeni forces, under the new phase, will target all ships heading to Israeli ports “in the Mediterranean Sea in any area within our reach.”

Saree warned that the military would also “impose comprehensive sanctions” on all ships of companies involved in supplying and accessing the Israeli ports, regardless of their nationality, and “prevent all ships of these companies from passing through the operational area of the Armed Forces, regardless of their destinations,” if Israel launched a ground offensive against Rafah.

The statement vowed “broader and stronger escalatory stages” until the Israeli war on Gaza ends, and the siege imposed on people there is lifted.

Saree made the statement during a million-man rally in the capital Sana’a.

Almost every week, Yemenis take to the streets of several cities across the country to condemn the Israeli crimes in Gaza and reiterate their support for their country’s retaliatory operations against Israel.

Since October last year, the Yemeni armed forces have been launching attacks on targets in the occupied territories, and targeting ships in the Red Sea with owners linked to Israel or those going to and from ports in the occupied territories in solidarity with the Palestinians in the besieged Gaza Strip.

Israel launched the war on Gaza on October 7 after the Palestinian resistance movement Hamas waged the surprise Operation Al-Aqsa Storm against the occupying entity in response to the Israeli regime's decades-long campaign of bloodletting and devastation against Palestinians.

Tel Aviv has also blocked water, food, and electricity to Gaza, plunging the coastal strip into a humanitarian crisis.

Since the start of the offensive, the Tel Aviv regime has killed at least 34,622 Palestinians and injured 77,867 others.

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