Yemen facing catastrophe if overlooked, UN warns - GulfToday

Yemen facing catastrophe if overlooked, UN warns


UN humanitarian chief Martin Griffiths speaks to the reporters. File photo

Gulf Today Report

Yemen must not become a forgotten crisis behind Ukraine, organisers of Wednesday's UN pledging conference said, warning of catastrophic hunger if donations were not forthcoming.

The United Nations seeks to raise over $4 billion at a pledging event on Wednesday for war-torn Yemen where the humanitarian drive has seen funding dry up even before global attention turned to the crisis in Ukraine.


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"Today we are meeting to plug a huge gap in funding for the life-saving response," UN humanitarian chief Martin Griffiths told reporters.

"The war is in its seventh year and counting. The economy lies in ruins. Basic services are collapsing," he added.


"This year's response needs nearly $4.3 billion to help over 17 million people across Yemen."

"While Ukraine understandably and rightly requires our urgent attention and focus right now, we cannot drop the ball on other crises," said Swedish foreign ministry official Carl Skau.

The UN received just over half the $3.4 billion needed in 2020 while last year, donors gave $2.3 billion.

The World Food Programme warned on Monday that without substantial new funding mass starvation and famine would follow.

Donor budgets were strained by the pandemic, the Afghanistan crisis and now Russia's invasion of Ukraine. There are also concerns over allegations of Houthi interference in aid flows.

The Houthis ousted the government from the capital, Sanaa, in late 2014, prompting the coalition to intervene months later.


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