42 permits granted for ships and relief planes to Yemen

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"First plane landed in Sanaa this morning with humanitarian aid workers", Abeer Etefa, WFP regional spokeswoman told Reuters in an email on Saturday.

The UN and other advocacy groups have pressured the Saudi-led coalition to allow aid into Yemen through the Hodeida and Saleef seaports, which the coalition had said they would reopen.

The airport in the capital of Sanaa would reopen to United Nations aircraft and the sea port of Hodeida would be able to receive urgent humanitarian aid, the coalition statement said. Before the crisis began, between 80% and 90% of food imports entered through the port at Hodeida and Sanaa's airport, according to Jens Laerke, for the UN's Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

The UN Children's Fund said Saturday's flight was carrying more than 15 tonnes, or 1.9 million doses, of vaccine for diphtheria, tetanus and other preventable diseases.

About seven million people in Yemen - out of a population of 27 million - depend entirely on food aid, and four million rely on aid groups for clean water.

The Arab coalition fighting Yemeni rebels announced Wednesday that it would allow the resumption of humanitarian deliveries to Sanaa airport and the crucial Red Sea port of Hodeida, after a more than two-week blockade following a missile attack on Riyadh.

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The missile was struck down but it was the farthest a projectile by the rebels, also known as Houthis, had penetrated into the kingdom.

Three other aircraft - two carrying United Nations aid workers and one carrying International Committee of the Red Cross staff - also landed at the airport, which was repaired earlier this week after a Saudi-led air strike knocked out its radio navigation systems, an AFP correspondent reported.

Facing worldwide pressure, Saudi Arabia's permanent representative to the UN announced on November 13 that his nation would reopen government-controlled ports and airports within 24 hours to humanitarian shipments.

The UN says a continuation of the two-week blockade would make Yemen's war-battered population more vulnerable to cholera and starvation.

The coalition joined the Yemen war in March 2015, after the Houthis forced President Abed-Rabbo Mansour Hadi and his government to flee their temporary headquarters in the southern port city of Aden into exile in Saudi Arabia.