THE WHO warns: 75% of Yemeni kids are ‘chronically malnourished’, with the Yemeni population engulfed in food insecurity.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has warned that 75 per cent of Yemeni children suffer from acute malnutrition, as Saudi Arabia keeps bombing the southern impoverished neighbour in defiance of international calls to end its bloody war.
In a post on its Twitter account on Monday, the UN agency responsible for international public health warned that three out of four children in Yemen are ‘chronically malnourished.’
It also estimated that 16.2 million Yemenis – more than half of the country’s population of 30 million – are food insecure.
Acute malnutrition is responsible for almost one-third of all deaths in children under five years of age.
It damages a child’s physical development and causes intellectual or cognitive impairment among those who survive.
Malnutrition is largely irreversible, perpetuating illness, poverty, and inequality.
Back in February, four UN agencies, including the WHO, warned that acute malnutrition and severe acute malnutrition have increased by 16 and 22 per cent, respectively, among Yemeni children under five years of age from 2020.
The figures are among the highest levels of malnutrition recorded in the country since the Saudi war began in 2015, they added.
‘The increasing number of children going hungry in Yemen should shock us all into action,’ said UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore at the time.
‘More children will die with every day that passes without action. Humanitarian organisations need urgent predictable resources and unhindered access to communities on the ground to be able to save lives.’
Today, Yemen is one of the most dangerous places in the world for children to grow up, with high rates of communicable diseases, limited access to health services, and inadequate sanitation and hygiene systems.
Last month, the UN Security Council voiced ‘grave concern for the dire humanitarian situation (in Yemen), including prolonged starvation and the growing risk of large-scale famine, which is compounded by the dire economic situation.’
Saudi Arabia, supported by its regional and Western allies, launched the devastating military aggression against its southern neighbour in March 2015 in collaboration with a number of its allied states and with arms and logistics support from the US and several Western states.
The aim was to return to power the former Riyadh-backed regime and crush the popular Ansarullah movement which has been running state affairs in the absence of an effective government in Yemen.
The war has stopped well shy of all of its goals, despite killing tens of thousands of Yemenis and turning the entire Yemen into the scene of the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.
Meanwhile, Yemeni forces have in recent months gone from strength to strength against the Saudi-led invaders and left Riyadh and its allies bogged down in Yemen.
The newly-approved US weapons sale to Saudi Arabia is a ‘troubling’ indication of Riyadh’s intention to continue its aggression against Yemen, says an American scholar.
Throughout the course of the war, the United States has supported and armed Saudi Arabia. The Ansarullah movement, which runs the Sana’a government, frequently refers to the war as the ‘US-Saudi aggression’ to underscore Washington’s leading role in the war.
Despite his February promise to end ‘all American support for offensive operations in the war in Yemen, including relevant arms sales,’ US President Joe Biden has recently approved $650 million worth of weapons purchases to Saudi Arabia.
- Iran has slammed the United States over its blatant intervention in the internal affairs of independent and freedom-seeking countries, stating that Washington is inciting Cuban opposition groups to hold protests despite a government ban on the demonstrations.
Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh stated on Tuesday that the US has failed in its bid to foment nationwide protests on the Communist-run island due to the empathy between the Cuban nation and government.
He called for an end to the US’s economic and unilateral sanctions against Cuba, stressing that the bans have been slapped on Havana in order to provoke discontent among ordinary people in the country.
Khatibzadeh then referred to the United States as the main cause of Cubans’ livelihood problems and difficulties, stating that Washington is supporting unrest and destabilisation in the country and is seeking interference in the domestic affairs of Cuba in violation of international law.
‘The Islamic Republic of Iran, within the framework of its principled stances, expresses solidarity with Cuba, and reiterates that the illegal US sanctions are the main and important cause of the current livelihood and economic difficulties in the country,’ the Iranian diplomat said.
He added, ‘The United States should first and foremost end its illegitimate economic sanctions against Cuba if it is sincere in what is claiming about supporting the Cuban nation.’
The spokesman further underscored that the Cuban people and government will overcome the existing problems and upset those who try to interfere in the country’s internal affairs, saying that Washington’s destabilising measures have failed.
On November 10, Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez said the government would not allow ‘the persistent aggression by the United States government, its intense and constant attempts … to create conditions for internal destabilisation, to alter the citizens’ calm and security.’
‘There have been 29 statements from the United States government and influential figures in that nation’s congress since September 22 alone … all aimed at encouraging, guiding, instigating destabilisation actions in our country,’ Rodriguez said.
The planned rallies, scheduled for the same day the Communist-run country was set to reopen its borders to tourists, are reportedly sponsored by a US-based Facebook group Archipelago.
Dissidents planned protests for November 15, the same day the island country would reopen its borders to tourists after months of disruptions due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The march is reportedly sponsored by a US-based Facebook group named Archipelago.
The Cuban foreign minister also threatened to take legal action against Facebook over supporting the upcoming rallies by changing algorithms and the geo-locations of posts.
Havana has already denied permission for protests, saying Archipelago had links with ‘subversive organisations’ with an ‘open intention of changing the political system in Cuba.’
Also on Tuesday, the spokesman for the Iranian Foreign Ministry denounced the early Sunday attack in northern Burkina Faso, which killed at least 19 gendarmes and a civilian.
Khatibzadeh offered his condolences to the Burkinabe government and nation over the deadly incident.
He stated that Iran is ready to cooperate with Burkina Faso and other friendly West African countries in the fight against terrorism.
Death toll of the terrorist attack in Burkina Faso rose to 32 in its security forces’ worst loss yet.
At least 32 people, including 28 military police officers and four civilians, were killed in the suspected Takfiri terrorist attack in northern Burkina Faso.
Burkina Faso has been hit by militant attacks since 2015, mostly in the northern and eastern regions close to Mali and Niger, which are gripped by their own struggles against Takfiri terrorists.
Attacks by armed groups linked to al-Qaeda and Daesh terrorist groups have reportedly killed more than 2,000 people and forced more than 1.4 million to flee their homes in the Sahel region.
The attacks have continued to intensify in the area despite the presence of thousands of United Nations, regional and Western troops.