Yemen Humanitarian Update Covering 19 March – 25 March 2018 | Issue 8 [EN/AR]
Cooking gas and fuel shortages
The shortage of cooking gas in several northern governorates has entered the second month. Available gas is retailing at about 8,000 YER per 20-litre cylinder, compared to about 5,000 YER three weeks ago.
The official price is 3,000 YER per 20-litre cylinder.
In Al Hudaydah, Sana’a and Sa’ada, the authorities are distributing gas through local leaders to lessen congestion at gas stations and distribution points. In Sa’ada, black market gas costs 8,000-10.000 YER per cylinder. Many families and bakeries are now cooking with firewood. Fuel shortages are reported in southern governorates following the break-up of an earlier import monopoly. In February, average prices of diesel and petrol increased by two per cent across Yemen. In Shabwah governorate, the increase was significant – 17 per cent for diesel and 13 per cent for petrol. UNVIM data shows that before the November 2017 blockade of Yemen’s ports, nearly one-third of the monthly fuel import requirements of about 544,000 MT were being met. Since then, monthly imports have dropped by nearly a half. In the first two weeks of March, just 92,560MT of fuel was imported.
UPDATES FROM THE HUMANITARIAN HUBS
Sa’ada Hub: Conflict has escalated in Sa’ada governorate, with a high level of civilian impact incidents and casualties, including women and children. According to the Protection Cluster, airstrikes, shelling and ground fighting have impacted homes, farms and civilian infrastructure; and increased the risk of unexploded ordnances. In neighbouring Al Jawf governorate, escalated fighting is reported in several districts, with casualties. The violence has affected humanitarian movements, access and response within Al Jawf and Sa’ada governorates.
The ongoing violence in Sa’ada and Al Jawf has triggered new displacement, according to local authorities. Humanitarian partners report an urgent need to provide shelter, non-food items and food to at least 20 newly displaced households that are living in an open area in Rajwaza district in Al Jawf. There is also need to assist about 200 newly displaced families in Sa’ada and an estimated 500 households that have returned to their areas of origin in Sha’da and Al Dhaher districts in Sa’ada governorate.
Ibb Hub: Humanitarian partners are concerned about access challenges in Taizz governorate, including disruptions of movement along the Aden-Taizz city road. This road is a key transport route for humanitarian supplies, civilians and commercial goods. On 19 March, heavy clashes in Al Beirain area of Al Maafer district temporarily closed the road for six hours. Discussions are on-going with local parties about the option of using another road from Ibb to Taizz to enhance civilian movement and the delivery of humanitarian supplies.
Violence in Taizz governorate has displaced increasing numbers of civilians. In the last three weeks, clashes in Al Mukha district displaced about 126 families from AlZahra sub-district to Wadi Kabeer area in Al Mashaleha sub-district. This week, clashes were reported in Naqueel As Silw and in the southern areas near Khaled military camp.
Aden Hub: Recent assessments in Abyan governorate show that there is space for partners to respond to growing needs of displaced people in Khanfir and Zingibar districts. The needs vary from food, water, shelter and education. About 74 per cent of the assessed population were food-insecure and 57 per cent severely food-insecure. As of 13 March, UNHCR assistance had reached 5,710 IDPs in Khanfir district and 2,540 IDPs in Zingibar district. In Shoqra district, a rapid WASH assessment of 430 recently displaced households from Al Hudaydah found drinking water to be a major problem.
Since December, humanitarian partners operating in the southern governorates have recorded at least 8,670 displaced households; of whom 54 per cent originated from Hudaydah. An assessment by an international partner found that 42 per cent of the total population of Hays and Al Khawkah districts in Hudaydah have moved out, mostly to Al Mukha, Aden and Abyan.
Al Hudaydah Hub: Fighting in Hays, Al Tuhayat and Al Garrahi districts of Al Hudaydah continues to displace hundreds of families. This week, local authorities reported that 223 families were displaced to Jabal Ras district, 59 to Al Hudaydah city and 13 to As Salif district.
In Al Hudaydah city, local authorities are accommodating newly displaced families in a residential compound.
Humanitarian partners have raised concerns over the legality of accommodating IDPs in private property, but will provide basic assistance to the affected families.
Local authorities are establishing a camp in Zabid city and have put up tents to accommodate new IDPs.
The authorities have requested support from the humanitarian community in Al Hudaydah. In Abs district in nearby Hajjah governorate, OXFAM is supporting 7,111 vulnerable families from both displaced and the host community with cash assistance amounting to 29,500 YER per household.
Sana’a Hub: A recent mission to Bani Hushaysh district in Sana’a governorate found that the district has a large number of IDPs coming from Nihm district. Most of the IDPs are renting accommodation at an average monthly rate of 20,000-25,000 YER which is beyond what they can afford, given that most of them lack stable income.
Protection partners report an increase in civilian impact incidents in the Sana’a hub, from five last week to eight this week. These were primarily in Marib, specifically in Sirwah district. Although the number of incidents increased, civilian casualties fell, dropping from eight to four. Twenty houses and 25 farms were damaged as the result of airstrikes or shelling.
To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.