Sources at Aden airport have on Sunday revealed that the Saudi-led coalition has prevented a Turkish cargo plane carrying aid from landing in the city, which is suffering from the spread of Covid-19 and several other deadly diseases.
The banning of the plane landing was reportedly done under the pretext of preventing the “transport of terrorists.”
According to the sources, the plane was expected to arrive last week, but the coalition refused to grant it landing permits, although it only carried aid.
Coalition forces justified the move by saying that Turkey was trying to move fighters from Syria to support the Islah party (Yemeni Branch of the Muslim Brotherhood) in southern Yemen.
Saudi media had pre-empted the plane’s arrival by talking about Turkey’s start-up of a recruitment operation in Syria for its followers in Yemen.
Turkey later announced that it would send aid to Ma’rib, Islah’s stronghold, in a sign of its transfer of aid from Aden, although the Turkish Red Crescent is still active in several arears under control of the UAE-backed Southern Transitional Council.
According to the Turkish Red Crescent, it has distributed humanitarian aid in Ja’ar and Zinjibar districts, in cooperation with local organisations.
Aden has been witnessing the worst humanitarian disaster with the corona epidemic and the spread of fever, which has claimed thousands of victims.
The fact that Saudi Arabia is banning Turkish planes from landing and seeks to prevent potential support to Islah is surprising, as Riyadh has often backed the Muslim Brotherhood branch in Yemen over the course of the five-year war in Yemen. Although the Muslim Brotherhood is banned in Saudi Arabia itself, the Wahhabi kingdom has often used other branches of the organisation, like in Syria and Yemen, as sources of mercenaries for its strategic goals.
The banning of Turkish aid to Aden comes days after reports hit the press of a high-ranking Islah official having been arrested in Saudi Arabia on charges of colluding with Turkey.
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