More Yemeni children face malnourishment amid aid shortage, coronavirus: UNICEF

DUBAI: The number of malnourished children in Yemen could rise to 2.4 million by the end of the year due to a big shortfall in humanitarian funding, the United Nations children's agency UNICEF said on Friday (Jun 26).

A UNICEF report warned of a rise of 20 per cent in the number of malnourished chidren under the age of five – almost half of all of that age in the country.

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"If we do not receive urgent funding, children will be pushed to the brink of starvation and many will die," said UNICEF Yemen representative Sara Beysolow Nyanti. "We cannot overstate the scale of this emergency."

Yemen has been wracked for more than five years by a war pitting the Iran-aligned Houthi movement which controls much of the country and a Saudi-led coalition which supports the internationally-recognised government based in the south.

Tens of thousands of people have died, many of them civilians, and the ensuing humanitarian crisis has been called the worst in the world.

The United Nations has said it does not have enough funding to maintain the aid response, the world's largest. A pledging event this month raised half of what was needed and aid programmes impacting millions are set to close in coming weeks.

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UNICEF is appealing for US$461 million for its humanitarian response, which is currently only 39 per cent funded, and US$53 million for its COVID-19 response which is only 10 per cent funded.

Sanitation, immunisation and malnutrition programmes risk reduction and closure.

Yemen's health system is already on the brink of collapse, kept going through aid. Cholera, malaria and dengue were rife amid a maRead More – Source