Yemen

Yemen’s Children Suffering from Malnutrition, Lack of Medicine

Sayyaf Abdulsamad, a father, is trying to save the life of his little daughter. After medicines ran out in the hospitals of the northern province of Amran, he rushed her to a public hospital in the center of the capital Sanaa. The malnourished girl arrived unconscious at Al-Sabeen hospital earlier this week. “My daughter suffers from a protein deficiency,” the father told Xinhua. “At first, I took her to some hospitals in Amran, but they had no medicine, then I rushed her to Sanaa to the malnutrition ward in Al-Sabeen Hospital.”

Her doctors said in the crowded malnutrition ward that she and many other children could not survive due to the unprecedented crisis of medicines. “We have received a notification from the hospital administration that it is possible since the beginning of July that aid from the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) would be stopped. This will cause a big problem with patients’ families because they will have to pay hospital fees,” doctor Abdul Rahman Al-Rumayma said in the Al-Sabeen’s malnutrition ward.

“Under war and blockade, this is a problem that burdens the citizens, and we call on the international community and humanitarian organizations of the United Nations to carry out their humanitarian duties in Yemen during this critical situation, especially towards mothers and children,” he noted. Saudi Arabia and a number of its regional allies launched a devastating war on Yemen in March 2015 in an attempt to subdue an uprising that toppled a regime friendly to Riyadh.

The US-based Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED), a nonprofit conflict-research organization, estimates that the war has claimed more than 100,000 lives over the past five years. The war and economic blockade have also destroyed Yemen’s economic, agricultural and health industry, triggering what the United Nations describes as the world’s worst humanitarian crisis that left nearly 80 percent of the Yemeni population in total reliance on international humanitarian aid for survival. The UN aid agencies have estimated that more than 20 million Yemeni people are just a step away from starvation.

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