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Chemical fertilizer, banned because of its bomb-making properties, has been the target of several seizures, but farmers' crops have suffered as a consequence

Red Sea coast forces seize fourth smuggling shipment in two weeks

Forces backed by the Saudi-led coalition on Yemen’s Red Sea coast seized two shipments of contraband on Monday, the fourth such seizure in 10 days, a military official told Almasdar Online. The latest shipment, which contained cash (6.5 million Yemeni Riyals or nearly $11,000), cigarettes and motorcycles, was seized in Tahita district on its way to Houthi-controlled Al-Jarrahi district, both in Hodeidah governorate. 

On March 31, the joint west coast forces seized a truck carrying 340 bags of fertilizer in Al-Mocha district in western Taiz governorate, days after seizing two other shipments of fertilizer in the same area. 

The internationally recognized government has banned chemical fertilizer, a common ingredient in explosives used by Houthi fighters. However, the ban has hurt some farmers, whose crops aren’t as abundant as they were with the use of fertilizers.

Key smuggling routes pass through the government-controlled coastal districts of Taiz and Hodeidah. Houthis use the smuggling routes to bring banned goods into areas under their control. 

The joint west coast forces consist of the Giants Brigades, the Tihama Resistance and the National Resistance Forces led by Brig. Gen. Tareq Saleh, the nephew of former President Ali Abdullah Saleh and former head of the now defunct paramilitary Central Security Forces. 

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Editing by Ahlam Mohsen and Casey Coombs


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