Yemen: How to help the Yemen crisis – Why is Yemen starving?

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The existing crisis has already been worsened by the coronavirus pandemic, and now the United Nations estimates more than 20 million people require urgent humanitarian assistance – almost half of them children. The UK Government says the famine in Yemen “has never looked more likely”. Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said the UK would provide £5.8million in aid to help avert a famine.

Why is Yemen starving?

Yemen has been devastated by a conflict that has raged on since 2014.

The conflict lies between Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi’s administration and the Houthi armed movement, both of which claim to form the official government.

Mr Hadi’s government is supported by a coalition of powerful countries headed by Saudi Arabia, but also backed by Britain, the US and the United Arab Emirates.

The conflict has its roots in the Arab Spring of 2011, when an uprising forced the country’s long-time authoritarian president, Ali Abdullah Saleh, to hand over power to his deputy, Mr Hadi.

The political transition was intended to bring peace to Yemen, one of the Middle East’s poorest nations.

As president, however, Mr Hadi has struggled to deal with a variety of problems, including attacks by jihadists, a separatist movement in the south, as well as corruption, unemployment and food insecurity.

Fighting kicked off in 2014 when the Houthi Shia Muslim movement took advantage of Mr Hadi’s obvious weaknesses.

The conflict escalated dramatically in March 2015, when Saudi Arabia, backed by a number of Western countries, began airstrikes against the Houthis.

The political transition was intended to bring peace to Yemen, one of the Middle East’s poorest nations.

As president, however, Mr Hadi has struggled to deal with a variety of problems, including attacks by jihadists, a separatist movement in the south, as well as corruption, unemployment and food insecurity.

Fighting kicked off in 2014 when the Houthi Shia Muslim movement took advantage of Mr Hadi’s obvious weaknesses.

The conflict escalated dramatically in March 2015, when Saudi Arabia, backed by a number of Western countries, began airstrikes against the Houthis.

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They declared their aim as that of restoring Mr Hadi’s government and therefore stability to Yemen.

Saudi Arabia then claimed Iran was backing the Houthis with weapons and other forms of logistical support – a charge Iran vehemently denies.

Since then, the country has been torn apart by this raging war, bringing an unprecedented humanitarian crisis along with it.

As it stands, 8.4 million Yemeni people are at risk of starvation, while 75 percent of the population is in dire need of humanitarian assistance.

Severe acute malnutrition is threatening the lives of almost 400,000 children under the age of five.

How can I help the Yemen crisis?

There are a number of ways to help Yemen, whether it be through monetary donations or just raising awareness.

You can donate funds to Unicef by following this link.

Alternatively, you can donate to Save the Children’s Yemen crisis appeal here, or to Oxfam’s Yemen aid program here.

By donating to Oxfam, you will be helping to continue providing access to clean water, sanitation, cash assistance and food vouchers.

Share posts about Yemen on social media through Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, and try to make other people aware of what is happening in the Middle East.

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