The first container ship from Saudi Arabia docked at Yemen’s western port city of Hudaydah, the Houthi rebel group said on Tuesday.
"The first ship loaded with containers sailed directly from Jeddah to Hudaydah since the start of the siege and bombardment of the port by the aggressors (Saudi-led coalition)," chairman of the Houthi Supreme Revolutionary Committee, Muhammad Ali al-Houthi, said on Twitter.
According to the statement, the ship is the first from Jeddah to dock at Hudaydah port since the outbreak of the Yemeni conflict in 2014.
“The continuation of the flow of goods through the port of Hudaydah is a correct step towards enhancing confidence to move towards a comprehensive peace," al-Houthi said.
He said the Saudis can no longer “find any justification for preventing ships that come from its ports or forcing them to transit Djibouti as in the past."
Hudaydah city is held by Houthi rebels.
Neither the Saudi authorities nor Yemen’s legitimate government has commented on the Houthi announcement.
Yemen has been beset by violence and chaos since 2014, when Iran-aligned Houthi rebels overran much of the country, including the capital Sanaa. The crisis escalated in 2015 when the Saudi-led coalition launched a devastating air campaign aimed at rolling back Houthi territorial gains.
According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, the conflict in Yemen has so far claimed the lives of 233,000 people.
The Houthi group accuses the Saudi-led Arab coalition of imposing a siege on the port of Hudaydah and preventing the flow of goods and oil derivatives. The coalition denies the accusations.