Speaking during a visit to the Yemeni port city of Aden, Stephen O’Brien, the UN under-secretary-general for humanitarian affairs, called on the international community to increase its funding for life-saving operations in Yemen.
“Today, almost 19 million people in Yemen need humanitarian assistance. Seven million people don’t know where their next meal is coming from and we now face a serious risk of famine,” O’Brien said.
Citing tallies by health facilities, the UN official said more than 7,500 people have been killed and more than 40,000 more wounded since March 2015, when the Saudi military launched a deadly military campaign against Yemen in support of its former government and imposed an all-out naval blockade on its neighbor.
“We [however] know this is an underreporting, given the dilapidated state of the health system and health facilities across the country and their inability to accurately report the real numbers,” he added.
On Thursday, Yemen’s Legal Center for Rights and Development, an independent monitoring group, said the civilian death toll from the warfare had climbed to 12,041. The fatalities, it said, comprise 2,568 children and 1,870 women.