Yemen

Aaliyah, a 7-year-old IDP, fetches clean water from a newly rehabilitated water.
Aaliyah, a 7-year-old internally displaced person (IDP), fetches clean water from a newly rehabilitated water point funded by USAID/OFDA and installed by a USAID partner in Sana’a Governorate, Yemen.
USAID partner photo

Key Developments

Widespread fuel shortages, which began in mid-September due to delayed fuel shipments into Al Hudaydah Port following the implementation of Republic of Yemen Government (RoYG) regulations on commercial fuel imports, have led to increased fuel prices and long wait times at fuel stations, according to the UN. As a result, relief actors reported adverse impacts on public infrastructure reliant on fuel—particularly water, sanitation, and hygiene infrastructure—limiting access to safe drinking water and impeding vulnerable households’ ability to meet basic needs. While an increase in fuel shipments to Al Hudaydah Port in late October has temporarily alleviated constrained operations at fuel stations, humanitarian organizations remain concerned that shortages could continue in late November without a long-term solution.

U.S. Government partners the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, the UN World Food Program, and the UN World Health Organization conducted an assessment mission to Al Hudaydah Governorate’s Durayhimi city, which has remained inaccessible since June 2018 due to continued fighting between Al Houthi and RoYG forces. In addition to assessing humanitarian needs, the UN agencies distributed emergency relief items, including food assistance, hygiene kits, medicine, nutrition supplements, and safe drinking water, to the estimated 200 civilians remaining in the city.


Background

Between 2004 and early 2015, conflict between the Republic of Yemen Government (RoYG) and Al Houthi opposition forces in the north and between Al Qaeda-affiliated groups and RoYG forces in the south, forced people in northern Yemen to repeatedly flee their homes, resulting in the need for humanitarian aid. At the same time, fighting between RoYG forces and tribal and militant groups since 2011 limited the capacity of the RoYG to provide basic services, and humanitarian needs increased among impoverished populations. In late March 2015, a coalition led by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia began airstrikes on Al Houthi and allied forces to halt their southward expansion. The ongoing conflict has damaged public infrastructure, interrupted essential services, displaced populations, and reduced the level of commercial imports to a fraction of the levels required to sustain the Yemeni population. The country relies on imports for 90 percent of its grain and other food sources. The escalated conflict, coupled with protracted political instability, the resulting economic crisis, rising fuel and food prices, and high unemployment, has left nearly 19 million people in need of humanitarian aid, and has put more than 17 million people at risk of starvation.

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Last updated: November 15, 2019

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