A UN aid agency warned that malnutrition is forcing Yemenis to beg as the country is scrambling with catastrophic food insecurity prior to the recent spike in food prices as a result of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Oxfam Country Director in Yemen, Ferran Puig said that the world must not look away while Yemen suffers. “Even before the Ukraine conflict drove up food prices and threatened food imports, two-thirds of major aid programs had already been reduced or closed because of lack of funding,” Puig said in a virtual pledging event on the humanitarian crisis in Yemen.
According to Puig, malnutrition “is heart-breaking”, where “more and more people are reduced to begging” with already there is a cut in funding.
“The 17.4 million people currently going hungry are at real risk of becoming acutely malnourished and many are likely to die unless the funds needed are donated by the international community,” Puig added.
Puig said that the ongoing seven years of war destroyed Yemen’s economy, creating “ripples of misery” for everyone.
“Those who were previously secure and able to provide for themselves and their families can no longer do so. There is a fuel crisis, a currency crisis, and a health crisis, the country is already on life support,” Puig lamented.
Puig called on the international community to step in to save Yemen by negotiating peace to allow a lasting recovery.
On Wednesday, the UN announced that it had received financial pledges from 36 donors worth $1.3 billion for its humanitarian plan in Yemen for 2022.
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