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Funding crisis forces UN to cut food assistance to Yemen

Funding crisis forces UN to cut food assistance to Yemen

The UN humanitarian agency, World Food Programme, has announced that it has been forced to reduce food assistance to Yemen. Due to financial crisis, the war-torn nation with its eight million people remains in acute need.

The WFP cuts its assistance to Yemen from January, so, the affected families will get barely half the daily minimum ration. In other words, at least 5 million Yemenis at immediate risk of slipping into famine.

Commenting on the forced measure, the WFP warned that its food stocks were alarmingly low and more severe reductions would soon be unavoidable. Next month will be crucial, the UN official say, while donors have pledged only $NZ3.2 billion of the $NZ5.64b requested by UN bodies for the humanitarian aid effort in Yemen this year.

Thus, the WFP requires:

  • $NZ1.19b to continue to assist the most vulnerable until May, and
  • $NZ2.89b to help those on the brink of famine throughout 2022.

Corinne Fleischer, the WFP’s regional director for the Middle East and North Africa, stressed that desperate times call for desperate measures. However, without new funding from the international community, the WFP could be forced to cut people from food supply completely. From January, malnutrition treatment and food supplies for children may also be reduced drastically.

In 2021, food prices have more than doubled across much of Yemen, while fighting across multiple front lines has displaced tens of thousands of people.

The nation has been devastated by a conflict that escalated in 2015, when the Iran-aligned rebel Houthi movement seized control of large parts of the country and a Saudi-led coalition launched an operation to restore President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi’s rule, Radio New Zealand reports.