Yemen is the world’s single largest humanitarian crisis.
Over two years of intense conflict in Yemen have resulted in displacement and loss of income for millions of people, and put their coping strategies under severe pressure. Decades of ongoing upheaval, drought and chronic impoverishment preceded the current situation in Yemen.
Yemen is currently experiencing extreme food shortage, and a staggering 14 million people don’t have enough to eat. This is over half of the country’s population. Even before the conflict, Yemen imported 90 per cent of its food. The tough terrain and damaged infrastructure also make it difficult to reach people in remote areas.
How the Irish Red Cross are helping in Yemen
Two Irish Red Cross technical specialists deployed to Yemen in response to the ongoing conflict. They are working in the health and economic security.
To date, €25,000 raised through the Irish Red Cross Yemen Emergency Appeal will aid the response to the cholera outbreak.
Why is the situation like this?
Yemen is in the Middle East, south of Saudi Arabia and only about 20 miles across the Red Sea from Djibouti in the Horn of Africa.
The country’s 27.4 million people were already among the poorest in the Middle East before the current conflict began. Malnutrition rates were already high and around half of children under five were affected.
While there has been sporadic conflict in Yemen for decades, fighting has been much more intense for nearly two years. Health centres and hospitals are particularly badly affected. Civilians are dying unnecessarily or becoming disabled because hospitals have been destroyed and essential drugs are in very short supply.
Cholera in Yemen
The Ministry of Health and Population (MoPHP) in Sana’a declared the state of emergency following an outbreak of cholera. There are over 135.000 suspected cases of cholera nationwide, which have caused to date (14th June 2017) 974 deaths. Most affected in the outbreak are the areas of Sana’a Capital, Sana’a Governorate, Amran, Hajjah, Hodeidah, Al Mahwitt, Ibb, Al Bayda, Al Daaleh, Dhamar, Taiz, Raymah, Aden, Abyan, Al Jawf, Saada and Mareb.
War is at the root of the near collapse of Yemen, cholera is just a very tragic by-product of it.
Despite the work of Irish Red Cross in Yemen, donations are urgently needed to help people impacted by the conflict and subsequent famine crisis and cholera outbreak.