Ben Anderson returns to Yemen to witness the apocalyptic effects of four years of war and indiscriminate bombing of civilians. With statistics that range from 10,000 to 20,000 civilians killed, and a report by Save the Children estimating that 85,000 children under the age of five have died from starvation. Where millions more people have fled their homes, and survivors are now facing death by preventable famine and disease.
The world’s greatest humanitarian crisis, created in large part by U.S. allies Saudi Arabia and the UAE, using American and British supplied weapons, fuel, intelligence and warplanes, has turned Yemen into a living hell.
In his latest visit to Yemen, Ben Anderson gains access to the various fighting groups waging war for the Saudi-led coalition, and witnesses the devastating effect the chaotic fighting and indiscriminate bombing is having on civilians.
Unicef has reported that 1.8 million Yemeni children under the age of five suffer from acute malnutrition, and the lives of 400,000 severely affected children are under threat.
Geert Cappelaere, regional director for the Middle East and North Africa at UN children’s agency Unicef, “Yemen is today a living hell – not for 50% to 60% of the children – it is a living hell for every boy and girl in Yemen,” he told a news conference in the Jordanian capital.
Cappelaere added that 30,000 children die of malnutrition each year in Yemen, while a child dies every 10 minutes from easily preventable diseases.
“The human cost and the humanitarian impact of this conflict is unjustifiable,” UN humanitarian coordinator Lise Grande said in a statement to media. “Parties to the conflict are obliged to do absolutely everything possible to protect civilians and civilian infrastructure and ensure people have access to the aid they are entitled to and need to survive.”