Seven million Yemenis face acute food shortages: UN
Yemeni children stand next to food rations that a local charity is distributing to families affected by the country's ongoing conflict during the fasting month of Ramadan on June 15, 2016 in an empoverished part of the capital Sanaa. (AFP/Mohammed Huwais)
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Two agencies of the United Nations (UN) have warned of acute food shortages and a hunger crisis amounting to an “emergency” in Yemen.
The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization and the World Food Programme, in a report published on Tuesday, announced that food insecurity in Yemen has intensified significantly over the past year, and three million Yemeni children are currently at risk of malnutrition.
“At least seven million people — a quarter of the population — are living under emergency levels of food insecurity,” the UN agencies said in a statement.
“This reflects a 15-percent increase since June 2015. A further 7.1 million people are in a state of crisis,” they added.
Jamie McGoldrick, the UN humanitarian coordinator for Yemen, said, “This clearly shows the huge magnitude of the humanitarian crisis in Yemen.”
“This is one of the worst crises in the world and is continuing to get worse,” he said.
In a separate development, more than a dozen civilians have lost their lives in a new Saudi airstrike against Yemen’s southwestern province of Lahij.
Saudi jets attacked a residential neighborhood in the al-Ka’abin district of the province, killing 15 people, Yemen’s al-Masirah reported.
Yemen has been gripped by conflict for over a year, when Saudi Arabi launched a military operation in March 2015 to restore the government of Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi to power. The Saudi-supported Hadi government was forced into exile when much of the country was overrun by Iran-backed Houthi rebels.
Editor's note: This article has been edited from the source material.