The United Nations (UN) Office for Humanitarian Affairs has warned that 400,000 Yemeni children are at imminent risk of death due to malnutrition, while about 5 million people are one step away from starvation.
The United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, Martin Griffiths, said in a statement reported by “Yemen News” channel today, Tuesday, that two-thirds of the population of Yemen – equivalent to 20 million people – is in dire need of humanitarian assistance, as a result of the civil war that the country has been witnessing for nearly seven years.
Griffiths stressed that five million people suffer from severe hunger and are one step away from starvation, warning of the danger of these years in affecting children who have grown up in conflict, as it changes their view of how to survive, noting that malnutrition leads to stunting that It has a long term effect.
Al-Houthi rebels continue to refrain from paying the salaries of employees in their areas of control and providing basic services while harnessing revenues, taxes, and the value of oil and gas derivatives in the ports and governorates under their control for the benefit of their leaders and financing their activities and armed elements on the fighting fronts.
However, the Minister of Planning and International Cooperation in Yemen, Waed Bazeb, revealed that the civil war that has broken out in the country for seven years caused an unprecedented contraction of the Yemeni economy and a decline of the national currency by nearly 200%.
This came in Bazeb’s statements during a video conference with the Regional Director for Egypt, Yemen, and Djibouti at the World Bank Marina Weiss, with the participation of the Executive Director of the World Bank Group, Mirza Hassan, according to the Yemeni news agency “Saba” broadcasting from Riyadh, the capital city of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The minister said that the Yemeni economy has been suffering from an unprecedented downturn since the Houthi rebels carried out their coup against constitutional legitimacy and the state in 2014.
He revealed that Yemen during the internal conflict lost more than $90 billion, according to preliminary estimates, as a direct loss in the General Domestic Product (GDP), in addition to losses resulting from the destruction of large parts of the infrastructure across the country because of war.
Bazeb went on to say that the value of the national currency (the Yemeni Rial) fell against foreign currencies by about 180 %.
This freefall was accompanied by a rise in prices, a deterioration in the standard of living, and a decrease in the average per capita income, which lost about 60 % of its value.
He stated that the challenges and crises facing the Yemeni economy and their repercussions; the recurring oil derivatives crisis, had the greatest impact in weakening the various service sectors, especially the electricity, health sector, the food, and humanitarian security crisis, which left about 60% of the population vulnerable to food insecurity.