Yemen Concept of Operations, July 2017
Since March 2015, the conflict in Yemen has exacerbated the already precarious humanitarian situation and according to OCHA, 18.8 million were in need of humanitarian assistance as of November 2016, of which 12 million were prioritized for humanitarian assistance. The scale of the needs and the scope of the emergency response have required a large, multi-agency and multi-sector response to be undertaken. Therefore, additional logistical support has been required to ensure humanitarian organisations responding to the crisis can deliver efficient and effective assistance to affected people.
Against this backdrop, Yemen is currently facing a cholera epidemic of unprecedented scale and on 14 May 2017, the Ministry of Public Health and Population in Sana’a officially declared a state of emergency. The WHO reported over 396,000 suspected cases as of 25 July 2017 across nearly every governorate, and OCHA reported on 16 July 2017 that the number of people in need of humanitarian assistance has increased to 20.7 million, due mostly to the cholera outbreak. The disease has spread rapidly in a context with less than 45 per cent of all health facilities fully functional, where two-thirds of population does not have access to safe drinking water and sanitation, and with widespread acute food insecurity and malnutrition.
The Logistics Cluster facilitates access to common logistics services (temporary storage; air, sea and overland transport; fuel distribution), as well as assuming a coordination and information management role to maximise the use of available resources in-country, and avoid duplication of efforts.
Logistics Gaps and Bottlenecks The major constraints on the ability of humanitarian organisations to respond to the crisis in Yemen are: the lack of access due to insecurity, a rapidly changing security situation, and limited or much damaged infrastructure.
Specifically, the following logistics gaps have been identified:
Congestion at main entry points (POD – port of discharge);
Limited international transport options into Yemen, especially by air;
Limited in-country storage capacity;
Poor overland transport capacity from neighbouring countries;
Limited cold chain capacity for the needs of the cholera response.
Unreliable and unpredictable access to sufficient quantities of fuel, as well as high volatility in its price;