Saudi oil tanker hit in Houthi attack off Yemen

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The ballistic missile attack came hours after Human Rights Watch accused the Houthis of violating laws of war by indiscriminately firing rockets on populated areas inside Saudi Arabia.

In a statement carried by Saudi media, the coalition said the tanker was in global waters when it got under "Houthi-Iranian attack".

The ship sustained minor damage in the attack, which was thwarted by swift intervention of the coalition's naval ship. "As a result of that attack, the tanker was subjected to a slight but ineffective hit and it resumed its naval course northwards, escorted by a coalition warship", the statement said.

The Houthis said in a text message to Reuters news agency they had actually been targeting a battleship "in response to the bombardment of displaced people in Hodeidah". It gave no further details.

Saudi Arabia and its allies shut down the country's land, sea and air borders past year in response to a missile attack by the Huthis that was intercepted near Riyadh.

Saudi Arabia, along with the United Arab Emirates, has bombed and killed Yemen's Iran-allied Houthi rebels in addition to thousands of civilians. Tehran and the Houthis deny the charge.

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Ministry spokesman Maria Zakharova said there was no explanation given for the search, which she called "the latest provocation". German Ambassador to Russia Ruediger von Fritsch leaves the Russian foreign ministry building in Moscow , Russia March 30, 2018.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres joined top officials from dozens of countries including Sweden and Switzerland at the pledging conference aimed to raise funds toward a 2.96 billion dollars.

"I am optimistic about that possibility", the United Nations chief added.

Additionally, USAID announced that because humanitarian support will not prevent Yemen's economic and social downfall, the U.S.is in the process of providing $55 million in economic and development aid, pending Congressional approval.

Previous year s Yemen appeal for $2.5 billion, which was 73 percent funded, but the needs have intensified in a country battered since 2015 by a Saudi-led military offensive aimed at repelling Iran-backed Huthi rebels who control the capital.

Yemeni Foreign Minister Abdel-Malek al-Mekhlafi called for a return to the negotiating table to end the war in the Arabian peninsula's poorest country and said his government was working to open blockaded ports and airports to aid.

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