250,000 Yemenis at the brink of starvation

29th Nov 2019
250,000 Yemenis at the brink of starvation

A malnourished infant receives treatment at Sabeen Hospital in the Yemeni capital Sana’a, on October 7
(Credit: Mohammed Hamoud/Anadolu Agency)

Harun Nasrullah

The World Health Organization warned on October 27 that quarter of a million Yemenis are on the brink of starvation. ‘The ongoing conflict and its resulting economic crisis are the key factors behind food insecurity in Yemen,’ the World Health Organization said.

The World Health Organization pointed out that the Yemeni conflict had destroyed some of the country’s ‘vital civilian infrastructure,’ adding that around 20 million Yemenis were ‘food insecure.’

‘Nearly a quarter of a million people are on the brink of starvation, if not urgent intervention,’ said the United Nations body.

In collaboration with local health authorities and the World Bank, the World Health Organization established a surveillance system to seek out the most vulnerable individuals for treatment.

The initiative is being carried out as part of the so-called “Emergency Health and Nutrition Project,” which was launched by the World Health Organization in partnership with the WB and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

“The Emergency Health and Nutrition Project would prioritise and closely monitor communities at high risk of famine,” the World Health Organization explained. Yemen has been locked in a war between pro-government forces and the Houthis, since September 2014.

In March 2015, the country was invaded by a Saudi-led coalition in an attempt to allegedly reverse the advancements made by the Houthi movement which has been in control of the capital Sana’a since 2014.

The United Nations has described the situation in the country as the world’s worst humanitarian crisis. According to UNICEF around two million children in Yemen are suffering from acute malnutrition, including 360,000 under five year olds.

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