Humanitarian Implementation Plan Yemen (ECHO/YEM/BUD/2013/91000) - Last update: 31/10/12 Version 1

The activities proposed hereafter are still subject to the adoption of the financing decision ECHO/WWD/ BUD/2013/01000

Yemen is one of the poorest countries in the world (154th out of 169 on the Human Development Index) and the poorest in the Middle East region. Over 47% of its 24 million inhabitants live on less than USD 2 a day. The country is facing a severe malnutrition crisis as almost one million children under five years old are suffering from acute malnutrition. More than a quarter of these children are severely affected and may die if they do not quickly receive life-saving assistance. Yemen is also the most food insecure country in the Arab world with 10 million affected people.

These problems are likely to be exacerbated by a very high population growth (nearly 3% per year) and the depletion of natural resources, in particular oil and water. Yemen is also prone to natural disasters such as droughts, floods and epidemics. The effects of climate change are increasingly felt in the region.

This already very difficult situation is compounded by the social and political crisis. From February until November 2011 the country was gripped by popular uprisings against President Ali Abdullah Saleh. The deadlock in the political situation led to instability and a power vacuum until the election of President Abdulrabbu Mansour Hadi in February 2012.

The country’s fragmentation deepened in 2012: Al Houthies controlled the Saada governorate and had a strong presence in Al-Jawf governorate in the North, while main towns like Sana’a or Taiz were under anti-governmental control. There is still some separation in the armed forces between those loyal to former president Saleh and those loyal to President Hadi. Simultaneously the control of the Houthies in the North is being contested by tribal leaders and Salafists. The South remains a hotbed of military and political opposition. In Abyan the government forces have driven out Ansar Al Sharia (AAS), but the defeat of AAS and Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) is far from complete, with a large number of their fighters having mingled with the population and merged with the anti-governmental secessionist movement Al Hirak. The core AAS members have fled into the mountainous areas of nearby Governorates of Shabwah, Hadramaut and others.

Moreover, the political instability and the famine in the Horn of Africa have continued to feed an increasing flow of refugees and asylum seekers, mainly Somalis and Ethiopians landing on Yemen's shores.

Attacks by tribesmen on the oil and gas pipelines of the Yemeni oil fields in Marib governorate continue, disturbing both exports and national distribution. In spite of donations in kind of oil and fuel by the Saudi government, energy shortages continue to adversely impact the day-to-day life including businesses, health facilities and humanitarian operations.

Yemen scores 3/3, the most severe level, in the Vulnerability and Crisis Index of the Directorate-General for Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection (DG ECHO) and has been declared a forgotten crisis for 2013.