Dozens of homes were destroyed on Monday in a residential area in the Yemeni capital Sanaa after a tank of fuel exploded at a depot reportedly belonging to a citizen named, Naji Al-Hakim.
Some news outlets have claimed that he is a member of the Houthi movement, which forms part of the unrecognised, ruling National Salvation Government in the country’s north.
The property, in the Al-Sunainah neighbourhood, was said to be storing petroleum derivatives which were being sold on the black market while the country is facing an ongoing fuel crisis.
Please make dua for Yemen💔
With all the problems going on, a fire has broken out in Sanaa apparently from an oil warehouse. 6 houses have been set on fire. All the information i know of so far. pic.twitter.com/z4cvfoWkKm
— CurlyRado🇾🇪 (@CurlyRado) June 22, 2020
According to the Yemen Press Agency, the fire which affected eight homes, did not result in any casualties and was put out by firefighting vehicles belonging to the Civil Defence Authority, although the New Arab reports that it was extinguished by local volunteers before their arrival.
The authorities in Sanaa have blamed the fuel shortage on the blockade imposed by the US-backed, Saudi-led coalition. This, the Houthi aligned body has said, includes a siege on the vital port of Hudaydah which has exacerbated the humanitarian crisis, described by the UN as the worst in the world.
Earlier this month it was reported that fuel tankers had been prevented from reaching Yemeni waters by Riyadh and its allies for nearly 70 days with many Yemenis being forced to wait in long queues at petrol stations. However, the Saudi-based Yemeni government has accused the Houthis of propagating the oil crisis in areas under its control to take advantage of the black market.