UN Aid Chief: Yemen to ‘Fall Off Cliff’ Without Additional Funds
The United Nations’ humanitarian chief has warned that Yemen will “fall off the cliff” unless additional aid is provided to the war-torn country. Mark Lowcock reportedly told a closed Security Council meeting that millions of Yemenis were on the verge of starvation, still others were dying of cholera, and even more could perish from the coronavirus. He described the situation in Yemen as a perfect storm, with five-plus years of fighting between a Saudi-led coalition of Sunni countries and Iranian-backed Shi’ite Houthi rebels having decimated the economy and critical infrastructure. These “appalling multi-casualty incidents,” Lowcock said, had steered Yemen toward “an unprecedented calamity.” A virtual donor conference for Yemen earlier this month raised $1.35 billion, well short of the UN’s intended target of the $2.4 billion that officials say is needed to sustain humanitarian operations in the country. The conflict has killed over 10,000 people, displaced two million others and left some 80% of citizens in need of assistance.