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Social Unrest In Yemen Impeding Humanitarian Aid Delivery, U.N. Official Says

Almost one-third of Yemen’s 23 million people do not have enough food, and social unrest in the country is making it difficult for aid groups to reach those in need, Valerie Amos, U.N. under-secretary-general for humanitarian affairs and emergency relief coordinator, said on Monday, Reuters reports.

Amos said Yemen will need $224 million this year for humanitarian aid to provide food, health, water and sanitation for women and children. “As in Libya, the key issues for us is to get to the populations who are affected, this is absolutely key for us,” she said (Fuchs, 3/28). “I am especially concerned about the humanitarian situation in Yemen because, even before the recent protests, the country was facing a humanitarian crisis due to protracted conflict in the north displacing 300,000 people, some of them multiple times,” she said, U.N. News Centre writes.

“The recent fighting has again affected hundreds of people that have not recovered from earlier conflict,” Amos said, adding, “The prolonged and chronic suffering in the country means that humanitarian aid continues to be urgently needed” (3/28).

In related news, an international coalition of organizations, including NGOs from Africa, on Monday “urged the U.N. Human Rights Council to call a special session on what they called a rights crisis in Yemen,” a second Reuters article reports. “The NGOs said Yemeni authorities were responsible for ‘grave human rights violations, including the right to life’ in seeking to quell mass demonstrations against the 32-year rule of President Ali Abdullah Saleh,” the news service writes (Evans, 3/28).  

USAID Donates Medical Supplies To Support Emergency Treatment In Yemen

USAID has delivered “$16,678 worth of medical consumables to the University of Science and Technology Hospital (USTH) in [the capital city of] Sana’a to support the treatment of emergency cases,” Saba Net reports.

“Since July 2010, the U.S. government has provided $1.7 million in assistance to 65 Yemeni health facilities in six governorates, including health units in remote areas, health centers, rural hospitals, and hospitals in governorate capitals”, the U.S. embassy in Sana’a said in a press release, the news service writes (3/29).

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