At a meeting with the summit, head of the World Food Program called for peace and ceasefire in the Arab country
Executive Director of the World Food Program, David Beasley, called for peace in Yemen and called for new funding to help hungry families in the country.
To the UN Security Council, this Thursday (11), Beasley spoke about the conflict in the Arab country and the imminence of the worst hunger crisis seen in modern history. According to him, more than half of Yemenis are suffering acute food shortages.
He said that with more funding it will be possible to alleviate the problem. Yemen is experiencing a civil conflict between government troops, supported by Saudi Arabia, and Houthi rebels, supported by Iran.
UN: Security Council analyzes humanitarian crisis and threat of hunger in Yemen
Children play in front of the house destroyed by an air strike in the Yemeni capital, Sanaa, in July 2019 (Photo: Unicef / Alessio Romenzi)
In the capital Sanaa, he visited a hospital. Half of children under five, a total of 2.3 million people, are expected to face acute malnutrition later this year. At least 400,000 will suffer severe acute malnutrition. Without urgent treatment, they are at risk of death.
In the children's ward, Beasley said he found absolute silence because the children are very sick and dejected. Many families cannot even transport their children to the hospital. Several health posts are refusing hospitalization for lack of beds.
For WFP, humanitarian food assistance is the first line of defense against hunger in Yemen, 16 million people suffer food insecurity.
At the moment, the UN Agency prioritizes assistance to 11 districts that are already starving to avoid the worst. But millions more Yemenis also need support against the imminent famine, the lack of fuel and the skyrocketing price of food.
Women and girls
According to Beasley, 14 cargo ships with fuel are off the coast of the Red Sea, unable to enter the country. Since January 3, no vessel has been allowed to dock at the port of Hodeida. Without fuel, hospitals and commerce cannot function.
For the WFP head, the situation in Yemen is hellish and terrible. David Beasley said the country is becoming the worst place in the world in a crisis produced entirely by humans.
Spending International Women's Day in Yemen, he said it is necessary to empower girls and women as a way to achieve zero hunger. The agency is asking for $ 1.9 billion to avert a devastating hunger crisis in Yemen this year.
David Beasley said that food assistance saves lives, but does not resolve the Yemen crisis, only a lasting peace solution that revitalizes the economy and stabilizes the local currency can achieve that goal.