Yemen is facing a real humanitarian disaster. The war there has not only destroyed the country’s infrastructure, the cholera epidemic and famine, but has also fueled the rise of sectarian terrorism and makes the Saudi military intervention questionable.
The humanitarian situation in Yemen has exceeded the limits of what can be characterized by the crisis, and the country is on the brink of a double humanitarian catastrophe. The country is threatening the cholera epidemic and famine, according to several UN agencies including UNICEF, WHO and WFP in a joint statement. “This is the worst case of a cholera epidemic in the world,” according to the three UN agencies.
Since April 2017 there have been 400,000 cases of cholera. It is estimated that 1,992 people have already died from the disease. In addition, nearly 2 million Yemenis suffer from acute malnutrition. And 60 percent of the population cannot get their daily necessities like food etc.
Collapse of the health system
The situation in Yemen is compounded and exacerbated by the health system, which is about to collapse. Important parts of the country’s infrastructure, including medical facilities, water supply and sanitation, have been destroyed, according to UN estimates. In the midst of this chaos, some 16,000 people volunteered to provide medical assistance.
More than 30,000 medical workers have been unable to get paid for more than 10 months. However, many continue to work. “Without the help of these volunteers, we could not save lives. Those who still had a chance to escape death, so we will do our best to help and support the volunteers morally, not only financially,” a UN statement said.
At the same time, the operations of the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen continue unabated. According to UN estimates, coalition raids do not exclude civilians either.
Last week, the United Nations reported on an air strike in the southwestern province of Taiz, Yemen, killing more than 20 civilians who had fled months of fighting. “How are military targets located in the vicinity of a destroyed house,” a UN statement asks.
Saudi Arabia has justified its decision to wage a war against the Huthis in Yemen that there was no alternative, as revealed by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman during his recent interview with Al Arabiya. “No one wants the war to continue.”
But the Saudi intervention in Yemen has not changed anything. On the contrary, the war has so far claimed the lives of more than ten (10,000) people.
Where a few days ago, a video clip, showing the forces loyal to Hadi, it shoots some of the Houthis prisoners, and cut off the heads of others.
At the same time, there are increasing reports of growing sectarian terrorism in Yemen. In the city of Aden, young Yemeni activist Amjad Abdul Rahman was wounded by a live bullet in an Internet cafe. The young man was active in an organization concerned with religion and women’s rights. The next day, the extremists stopped the funeral procession of the young man and prevented his burial in the Muslim cemetery, claiming that he was an “infidel,” and that is why he cannot be buried with Muslims.
The growing influence of sectarian terrorism the question is constantly asked about the feasibility of Saudi intervention in Yemen. “Because of the restriction of freedom of religion, security and stability do not appear to be among the priorities listed for Saudi Arabia,”a Yemeni teacher told the US Monitor website, asking not to be identified.