More funding needed to save Yemeni people from starvation

 View of Sana’a, the capital of Yemen View of Sana’a, the capital of Yemen Photo by Saif Albadni on Unsplash

22 September 2021

Despite over $2 billion already received, international organizations signal the need for additional support for the Yemeni people.

On Wednesday 22 September, the UN Humanitarian Relief Coordinator addressed world leaders at a meeting discussing the ongoing crisis in Yemen. Although Yemen’s Humanitarian Response Plan is “among the most well founded”, the $2 billion collected is not enough to sufficiently help the 16 million people on the verge of starvation. Children, women, and internally displaced people are particularly at risk, as the economic crisis and a third COVID-19 wave rolls through the country.

The UN relief chief grouped its plea for assistance into three separate segments. First, he asked for continuous support for Yemen’s humanitarian operation. Second, he highlighted the need to respect international humanitarian law, and third, he urged the international community to address the root drivers of the crisis, which is now in its seventh year. The crisis, in fact, started in 2014 when the Houthi rebel groups seized Sana’a, the capital of the country. Since then, Yemen has been facing one of the worst humanitarian crises ever witnessed. Because of the devastating impact on children, UNICEF supported the call to action of the UN relief chief by releasing grim data: 2.3 million children are acutely malnourished, while 1.7 million children are displaced.

According to the chief of the World Food Programme (WFP), a sum of at least $800 million is needed within the next six months to prevent 400,000 children from starving to death. Following the meeting, both the European Union and the United States positively responded to the call, by allocating €119 million and almost $290 million, respectively. Only by stepping up international assistance and by putting pressure on all parties to end the conflict, Yemen has some hope to recover from the crisis.




Author: Martina Apicella; Editor: Aleksandra Krol

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