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U.N. Seeks $4bn for Yemen

by AFP

Mohammed Huwais—AFP

World body’s calculations estimate around 20 million Yeminis will need humanitarian aid in 2019

The United Nations said on Monday it was seeking $4 billion to provide humanitarian aid to some 20 million Yemenis next year—or about 70 percent of the war-stricken country’s population.

Each year, the world body needs an additional billion dollars, U.N. Under Secretary General and Emergency Relief Coordinator Mark Lowcock said.

A donors’ conference backed by Sweden, Switzerland and the U.N. is set to take place on Feb. 26 in Geneva.

“We didn’t have a cessation of hostilities,” although the violence appears to have decreased, added Lowcock, who recently traveled to the country, expressing hope for a positive outcome to peace negotiations taking place in Sweden between the parties under U.N. auspices. He denounced obstacles to the delivery of humanitarian aid, noting that Yemen also needs help to bring its economy back from the brink. “Hodeida port is crucial” for humanitarian aid, Lowcock said, referring to the flashpoint city at the heart of negotiations in Sweden.

The Yemeni government, which is backed by Saudi Arabia and its military allies, has been battling the Iran-backed Houthi rebels for control of Yemen for nearly four years, spawning what the United Nations calls the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.

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