Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Development Cooperation Alexander De Croo provides € 5,5 million extra humanitarian aid for Yemen. Minister De Croo takes this decision following the demand from UN emergency aid coordinator Mark Lowcock in the UN Security Council in New York yesterday. He called for a humanitarian truce and additional humanitarian aid for the biggest humanitarian crisis in the world.
For almost four years already, Yemen is drenched in a bloody conflict, which led to more than 10.000 civilian casualties. More than 22 million people – about 80% of the Yemeni population – are in desperate need of humanitarian aid. For more than 14 million people the famine caused by the conflict will soon be particularly acute.
Cholera on the rise
The humanitarian crisis in Yemen is by far the worst in the world. Therefore, Minister De Croo provides € 5,5 million extra humanitarian aid. The funds will go to the UN children's rights fund UNICEF and the UN refugee fund UNHCR. Since the beginning of the war in Yemen, Belgium has already donated € 25 million for the humanitarian aid in the country.
Because of the war, the Yemeni government is no longer able to deliver basic services such as health care. Doctors are no longer paid and there is a lack of medicines.
Alexander De Croo: “After war and hunger, Yemen is now also struck by cholera. Every week there are 10,000 new cases of cholera, a doubling since the beginning of this year. Especially children are vulnerable. UNICEF estimates that every minute a child is infected with cholera in Yemen. If left untreated, within a few hours children are so weakened that they are barely able to breath anymore.”
Stop fuelling the conflict
Minister De Croo also calls upon the regional authorities in Belgium again to take the humanitarian situation in Yemen seriously and to stop fuelling the conflict with weapons. By doing this, De Croo joins UN aid coordinator Mark Lowcock and his appeal to the warring parties to avoid civilian targets and give humanitarian goods unobstructed access.
“As long as we continue to foster this conflict with arms supplies, the humanitarian madness will not stop. It is up to every government at its own level to take appropriate measures. Follow the example of Germany and stop the arm sales. From a humanitarian point of view, this can no longer be justified. This humanitarian crisis will only get worse in the following months. People have to realize what their actions entail”, says Minister De Croo.