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article imageAs the world turns, Yemen dies from conflict, famine and cholera

By Karen Graham     May 16, 2017 in World
With all the conflicts going on in the world today, one country, Yemen, is now on the verge of collapse. Conflict, a devastating drought and now a cholera outbreak have reached epidemic proportions in a population already starving to death.
UNICEF's Christophe Boulierac briefed reporters in Geneva on Tuesday, giving an update on the cholera crisis in Yemen. So far, there are over 11,000 suspected cases of cholera and over 130 people have died from the disease, which, by the way, is preventable.
"Yemenis are staring at yet another public health crisis in the making. Over 130 deaths so far, of which some are confirmed to be because of cholera. As of today, 25 percent of the cases are from Sana'a. One-third of the cases collectively are estimated to be children,: said Boulierac.
After two years of civil wa
Yemeni men suspected of being infected with cholera receive treatment at a hospital in Sanaa
Yemeni men suspected of being infected with cholera receive treatment at a hospital in Sanaa
Mohammed HUWAIS, AFP
r that has pitted the Houthis against the government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, social services have become almost non-existent. Only half the hospitals in the country are open, and they are being manned by a skeleton crew of doctors and nurses using what's left of scarce supplies.
According to US News, hospital hallways are overflowing with children, crying in pain from cholera, while out in the dry and barren plains and mountains, thousands of displaced villagers flee to get away from the warring militias. There is no food, and the water, when it is found, is scant and quite often dirty.
A third of Yemen's 22 provinces are on the brink of famine  the UN World Food Programme warns
A third of Yemen's 22 provinces are on the brink of famine, the UN World Food Programme warns
"Around 2.2 million children are malnourished, including 462,000 seriously so," said Boulierac. The United Nations is now estimating that in Yemen, "a child under the age of five dies every 10 minutes from preventable causes." This is a horrifying bit of information to digest.
Yemen is one of the poorest countries in the Middle East. A coalition being led by Saudi Arabia with backing from the United States has intervened on Hadi's behalf, carrying out thousands of air strikes against the Houthis, who they believe hold most of Yemen's main population centers. In the course of those air strikes, thousands of innocent Yemenis have been killed.
If one were to look at all the casualties, including those from conflict, famine, and disease, it would be difficult to add up all the deaths. In 2016, conflict, alone, killed over 8,100 people and displaced 2.4 million people. Of that number, 120,000 fled the country, going into Somalia and Djibouti.
More than 7 000 people have been killed and nearly 37 000 wounded since a Saudi-led coalition began ...
More than 7,000 people have been killed and nearly 37,000 wounded since a Saudi-led coalition began intervening in Yemen in March 2015
Ahmad Al-Basha, AFP
Looking at the over 2.4 million displaced people, they are trying to survive in inadequate shelters while coping with a lack of food. And this is a bad situation to be in because international aid has been and is still being hampered by not only the Houthi rebels but by coalition bombings.
In Yemen today, over 2.0 million people, mostly children, are now at risk of starvation, while another 5 to 8 million people do not have enough to eat. In 2011, almost 300,000 people died of starvation in the country. And disease? If one child is dying every 10 minutes from cholera and/or starvation, it's not too hard to figure out the numbers.
More about Yemen, Unicef, cholera crisis, Conflict, hunger crisis
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