Famine in Yemen (2016–present)
|Famine in Yemen|
المجاعة في اليمن
|Total deaths||More than 85,000 children (adults unknown)|
|Death rate||At least 130 children (adults unknown) per day|
(December 2016–November 2017 estimate)
Death rate since November 2017 unknown but more cases of famine and severe malnourishment reported during 2018
|Consequences||2016–18 Yemen cholera outbreak|
Since 2016, a famine has been ongoing in Yemen which started during the Yemeni Civil War. Over 17 million of Yemen's population are at risk; over 3.3 million children and pregnant or lactating women suffer from acute malnutrition. Over 100,000 of the affected children are in Al Hudaydah Governorate, with the city of Al Hudaydah worst affected area of the province. According to the Norwegian Refugee Council, the famine in Yemen will soon reach "biblical proportions". The famine is being compounded by an outbreak of cholera, which is resulting in 5,000 new cases daily. Devastation of Yemeni infrastructure, health, water and sanitation systems and facilities by Saudi-led coalition air strikes led to the spread of cholera. UNICEF says that Saudi-led coalition airstrikes are deliberately targeting water systems in Yemen.
After 5 November 2017, the famine in Yemen worsened because the Saudis, with the help of the United States, tightened their sea, air and land blockade. According to the manager of Al Hudaydah port, which is under the control of the Houthis, medicine and food cannot go to Al-Hudaydah, since Saudi-led airstrikes ruined the port's industrial cranes in August 2015. On 23 November, the blockade was allegedly partially but not fully lifted, and some humanitarian supplies were allowed into the country. However, the threat of the famine remains severe, and later independent sources denied the easing of blockade.
In October 2018, the United Nations warned that 13 million people face starvation in what could be "the worst famine in the world in 100 years." The following month, a report by Save the Children estimated that 85,000 children under the age of five have died from starvation. The famine has been compared by some commentators to the holodomor in Soviet Ukraine.
Saudi Arabian-led intervention
The famine is the direct result of the Saudi Arabian-led intervention in Yemen and blockade. Yemen was already the most impoverished nation in the Arabian Peninsula and the Middle East, and Al Hudaydah one of the poorest cities of Yemen, but the war and the naval blockade by the Saudi-led coalition and the United States Navy made the situation much worse. Fishing boats, the main livelihood of Al Hudaydah's residents, were destroyed by Saudi airstrikes, leaving them without any means to provide for their families. As a result, one child dies every ten minutes on average. A UN panel of experts found that Saudi Arabia is purposefully obstructing the delivery of humanitarian aid into Yemen.
Saudi Arabia was reported to be deliberately targeting means of food production and distribution in Yemen by bombing farms, fishing boats, ports, food storages, food factories, and other businesses in order to exacerbate famine. These actions led to the UN accusing the Saudi-led coalition of committing war crimes and having a "complete disregard for human life". 1,500 schools were damaged and destroyed during Yemeni Civil War. After Saudi-backed Hadi's forces retook Mocha from Houthis they barred fishermen from working. The Union of Yemeni fishermen accused the coalition of waging war against fishermen.
U.S. Senator Chris Murphy accused the United States of complicity in Yemen's humanitarian crisis, saying: "Thousands and thousands inside Yemen today are dying. ... This horror is caused in part by our decision to facilitate a bombing campaign that is murdering children and to endorse a Saudi strategy inside Yemen that is deliberately using disease and starvation and the withdrawal of humanitarian support as a tactic."
On 11 December 2017, Jamie McGoldrick, the UN's humanitarian coordinator for Yemen, affirmed that 8 million in the country are in danger of famine unless access to immediate humanitarian is allowed.
Since 5 November 2017, the Saudi-led coalition began blocking all fuel shipments to Yemen, causing farmers to abandon modern equipment like tractors and forcing hospitals to function without generators.
According to The Economist, another major cause of the famine is the popularity of the cultivation and consumption of khat, which requires a significant amount of water to grow in addition to being the most popular drug in Yemen. Khat cultivation is monopolised by the Houthi rebels. More than 50,000 children in Yemen died from starvation during 2017.
In July 2018, a 25% increase of severe hunger cases in Yemen compared to 2017 has been reported.
In a September 2018 column in The New York Times, Nicholas Kristof stated that the United States is supporting crimes against humanity in Yemen, adding that "America is helping to kill, maim and starve Yemeni children. At least eight million Yemenis are at risk of starvation from an approaching famine caused not by crop failures but by our actions and those of our allies. The United Nations has called it the world’s worst humanitarian crisis, and we own it."
On 31 October 2018, the United States and the United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia's biggest arm suppliers, called for a ceasefire in the conflict in Yemen. A press release from the United States Secretary of State, Michael Pompeo, stated "A cessation of hostilities and vigorous resumption of a political track will help ease the humanitarian crisis as well. It is time to end this conflict, replace conflict with compromise, and allow the Yemeni people to heal through peace and reconstruction." On November 10, 2018, the U.S. announced it would no longer refuel coalition aircraft operating over Yemen. The U.S. continues its backing of the Saudi-led intervention with weapons sales and intelligence sharing.
In November 2018, according to the New York Times report, 1.8 million children in Yemen are extremely subject to malnutrition.
- Saudi Arabian-led intervention in Yemen
- 2016–18 Yemen cholera outbreak
- Airstrikes on hospitals in Yemen
- Water supply and sanitation in Yemen
- Blockade of Yemen
- Destruction of Yemeni cultural heritage by Saudi-led coalition
- Press, Associated. "50,000 children in Yemen have died of starvation and disease so far this year, monitoring group says".
- "More than 50,000 Yemeni children are now expected to die by the end of 2017". 15 November 2017. Retrieved 21 November 2017.
- "50,000 children dead: UK-US-Saudi war on Yemen enters horrific new stage -- Sott.net". Sott.net.
- editor, Patrick Wintour Diplomatic (16 November 2017). "Saudis must lift Yemen blockade or 'untold' thousands will die, UN agencies warn" – via www.theguardian.com.
- "Parents are being forced to watch their children starve to death in Yemen". The Independent.
- "UNICEF: One child dies every 10 minutes in Yemen". www.aljazeera.com. Retrieved 5 January 2018.
- Press, Associated. "50,000 children in Yemen have died of starvation and disease so far this year, monitoring group says". chicagotribune.com. Retrieved 2017-12-22.
- "US involvement in the Yemen war just got deeper". Public Radio International. Retrieved 2018-02-23.
- "The drug that is starving Yemen". The Economist. 4 January 2018. Retrieved 5 January 2018.
- Graham-Harrison, Emma; agencies (4 October 2016). "Yemen famine feared as starving children fight for lives in hospital" – via www.theguardian.com.
- "For those of us living in Yemen, life is unbearable".
- "Yemen on brink of famine, warns UN food relief agency chief, appealing for resources and access". UN News Center. 13 March 2017.
- "Yemen conflict: A devastating toll for children". UNICEF.
- Ahmed Al-Haj (16 September 2016). "Ravaged by conflict, Yemen's coast faces rising malnutrition". U.S. News & World Report. Associated Press. Retrieved 21 September 2016.
- "Famine of 'Biblical Proportions' Descending Upon Yemen; Child Dying Every 10 Minutes". www.christianpost.com. Retrieved 21 November 2017.
- "Yemen faces world's worst cholera outbreak - UN". BBC. 25 June 2017. Retrieved 28 June 2017.
- "Thousands in Yemen get sick in an entirely preventable cholera outbreak".
- "U.S. Support "Vital" to Saudi Bombing of Yemen, Targeting Food Supplies as Millions Face Famine".
- Kennedy, Jonathan (2 August 2017). "Blame the Saudis for Yemen's cholera outbreak – they are targeting the people". The Guardian.
- "Access to water continues to be jeopardized for millions of children in war-torn Yemen". www.unicef.org.
- "'Catastrophic' Saudi Blockade on Yemen Could Starve Millions". Time. Retrieved 21 November 2017.
- CNN, Angela Dewan,. "Saudi blockade pushing Yemen to 'worst famine in decades'". Retrieved 21 November 2017.
- "'Catastrophic' Yemen crisis grows as blockade cuts Red Cross and UN aid". 8 November 2017. Retrieved 21 November 2017.
- "Famine survey warns of thousands dying daily in Yemen if ports stay closed". 21 November 2017. Retrieved 22 November 2017 – via Reuters.
- "Saudi Arabia is using famine as a weapon of war - Opinion". 28 November 2017.
- Yemen Is Still Being Starved to Death theamericanconservative.com Retrieved 13 December 2017.
- Erickson, Amanda (22 November 2017). "Saudi Arabia just reopened two key ports in Yemen. That won't prevent a famine". Washington Post. Retrieved 25 November 2017.
- Erickson, Amanda (1 December 2017). "Saudi Arabia lifted its blockade of Yemen. It's not nearly enough to prevent a famine". Washington Post. Retrieved 5 December 2017.
- "Yemen could be 'worst famine in 100 years'". BBC. October 15, 2018. Retrieved October 15, 2018.
- McKernan, Bethan (November 21, 2018). "Yemen: up to 85,000 young children dead from starvation". The Guardian. Retrieved November 22, 2018.
- Tarar, Urooj (November 10, 2017). "Is Yemen Saudi Arabia's Ukraine?". Daily Pakistan. Retrieved August 6, 2018.
- Harwood, Anthony (November 28, 2017). "Saudi Arabia is using famine as a weapon of war". Newsweek. Retrieved September 26, 2018.
- "Saudi de facto blockade starves Yemen of food and medicine". Reuters. Retrieved 21 November 2017.
- "Yemen under de facto blockade". Reuters. Retrieved 21 November 2017.
- Kristof, Nicholas (31 August 2017). "The Photos the U.S. and Saudi Arabia Don't Want You to See". Retrieved 22 November 2017 – via www.NYTimes.com.
- McKernan, Bethan (November 7, 2018). "Battle rages in Yemen's vital port as showdown looms". The Guardian. Retrieved November 7, 2018.
The port has been blockaded by the Saudi-led coalition for the past three years, a decision aid organisations say has been the main contributing factor to the famine that threatens to engulf half of Yemen’s 28 million population.
- Felipe Bueno (6 February 2017). "Food Crisis in Conflict-Ridden Yemen Borders on Famine". The Diplomatic Envoy. South Orange, New Jersey: School of Diplomacy and International Relations at Seton Hall University.
- Julian Borger (4 June 2016). "Saudi-led naval blockade leaves 20m Yemenis facing humanitarian disaster". The Guardian.
- Stephen Snyder (14 October 2016). "US involvement in the Yemen war just got deeper". The World. PRI.
- "UN humanitarian coordinator "shocked" by Saudi atrocities in Yemen -- Sott.net". Sott.net.
- "Bombing of schools by Saudi Arabia-led coalition a flagrant attack on future of Yemen's children". www.amnesty.org.
- "Yemen". Doctors Without Borders - USA.
- Saeed Kamali Dehghan; Ahmad Algohbary (8 February 2017). "Yemen's food crisis: 'We die either from the bombing or the hunger'". The Guardian.
- "UNICEF: One child dies every 10 minutes in Yemen". Al Jazeera. 12 December 2016.
- Editorial, Reuters. "Saudi-led coalition threatens Yemen by blocking aid -U.N. report".
- "U.S. Fingerprints on Attacks Obliterating Yemen's Economy".
- MENAFN. "Saudi air campaign targets Yemen's food supplies". Retrieved 5 January 2018.
- "Saudi Arabia 'deliberately targeting impoverished Yemen's farms and agricultural industry'". The Independent. Retrieved 2018-06-05.
- "Over 100 civilians killed in a month, including fishermen, refugees, as Yemen conflict reaches two-year mark". ReliefWeb. Retrieved 2018-06-05.
- "Saudi-led coalition strikes Yemeni port, civilians at risk". 10 February 2017 – via Reuters.
- "Air strikes kill at least 16 civilians in Yemen's Hodeidah: medics, residents | Reuters".
- "In Yemen, 34 killed in bottling factory bombing - CNN".
- "Bombing Businesses - Saudi Coalition Airstrikes on Yemen's Civilian Economic Structures". 11 July 2016.
- "Saudi-led air strikes in Yemen killed 68 civilians in one day, UN says". The Independent. Retrieved 2018-06-05.
- "The UN just accused Saudi Arabia led coalition of war crimes". The Independent. Retrieved 2018-06-05.
- "Death toll from Saudi airstrike on Yemeni wedding rises to 88: report". AMN - Al-Masdar News | المصدر نيوز. 2018-04-23. Retrieved 2018-06-05.
- "Yemen Devastated by Saudi-Influenced Famine". Americans for Democracy & Human Rights in Bahrain. 2018-01-24. Retrieved 2018-06-05.
- "Huge spike in Yemen violence as civilian deaths rise by 164% in four months | Global development | The Guardian".
- Craig, Iona (12 December 2017). "Bombed into famine: how Saudi air campaign targets Yemen's food supplies" – via www.theguardian.com.
- "Saudi Arabia 'deliberately targeting impoverished Yemen's farms and agricultural industry'". 23 October 2016.
- Craig, Iona (12 December 2017). "Bombed into famine: how Saudi air campaign targets Yemen's food supplies". Retrieved 5 January 2018 – via www.theguardian.com.
- "Congress Votes to Say It Hasn’t Authorized War in Yemen, Yet War in Yemen Goes On". The Intercept. 14 November 2017.
- "Yemen". Doctors Without Borders - USA. Retrieved 2018-11-06.
- Al Jazeera News. (11 December 2017). "More than 8 million 'a step away' from famine in Yemen". Al Jazeera website Retrieved 11 December 2017.
- United Nations. (11 December 2017). "UN aid official in Yemen urges lifting of blockade, says millions a ‘step away from famine’". UN News Centre website Retrieved 11 December 2017.
- "U.S. aid chief says no sign Yemen port blockade easing to allow aid in". 12 December 2017 – via Reuters.
- "US aid chief says no sign Yemen port blockade easing to allow aid in". www.worldnews.easybranches.com. Retrieved 2018-06-06.
- "Exclusive: Saudi-led blockade cuts fuel lifeline to Yemen". 6 December 2017 – via Reuters.
- AFP. "17 million in Yemen need food - now hospitals and water pumps will run out of fuel in three weeks".
- Kanso, Heba. "Yemen close to famine after port offensive, aid groups warn".
- Kristof, Nicholas (September 26, 2018). "Be Outraged by America's Role in Yemen's Misery". The New York Times. Retrieved October 24, 2018.
- "A new report by Martha Mundy – World Peace Foundation".
- "Ending the Conflict in Yemen". U.S. Department of State. Retrieved 2018-11-06.
- Ryan Browne, Barbara Starr (10 November 2018). "US to stop air refueling of Saudi-led coalition in Yemen". CNN. Retrieved 11 November 2018.
- "U.N.: A Yemeni Child Dies Every 10 Min. from War-Caused Disease, Hunger". DemocracyNow!. November 5, 2018. Retrieved November 7, 2018.
- "Yemen Girl Who Turned World's Eyes to Famine Is Dead". nytimes. Retrieved 1 November 2018.