FAMINE OR NOT, 120,000 CHILDREN IN YEMEN ARE IN A ‘CATASTROPHIC’ CONDITION
Save the Children’s Yemen Country Director Tamer Kirolos said:
“The new food insecurity survey released today shows that the hunger crisis in Yemen has been getting worse over the past year with an estimated 120,000 children now living in ‘catastrophic’ conditions. This means that even with humanitarian aid they have not been meeting their daily food needs for some time, with evidence of starvation, death and destitution. Many thousands have just days left to live unless they receive urgent help. Millions more children could fall into this category.
“Whether or not we call the hunger crisis in Yemen a famine is irrelevant to the millions of children going hungry every day and to their parents who struggle to put food on the table.
“Save the Children estimates that 85,000 children may have already died from extreme hunger and disease since the war escalated in 2015, and that number is rising every day.
“Our teams on the ground meet families bringing in their severely malnourished and unresponsive children, desperate to save them. There is nothing worse than watching a child die of starvation while food is prevented from entering the country and violence hinders its distribution. Even where food is available, many people simply can’t afford it. Malnourished children are succumbing to preventable diseases because life-saving medicines are delayed at ports and checkpoints.
“This dire situation is entirely manmade; a direct result of the escalation of the violence that started almost four years ago. The only way to end the suffering is to end the conflict and the consultation in Sweden between the warring parties is a promising sign. We call on all countries that have influence on the parties to this conflict to increase the pressure on them to bring an end to this war. If they fail to do so, children’s lives will continue to be lost on a large scale and history will judge all those involved.”
Multimedia content of baby Nabil* available here.
Nabil* suffers from Severe Acute Malnutrition. He lives with his family in a tent in an IDP camp in Aden. His family moved from Hodeidah due to the fighting. Nabil*s mother cannot breastfeed because she had to undergo an operation on her breast. His father can’t find work and was forced to sell his bed just to afford the milk that was prescribed to feed Nabil*.
Spokespeople available in Yemen and London.
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