Yemen

Yemen: UNHCR Operational Update, covering the period 19 - 26 August 2021

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Situation Report
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Key Figures:

20.7 million people in need

Over 4 million internally displaced

Over 80 per cent have been displaced for more than a year

52,536 individuals (8,756 families) newly displaced in 20211

Children and women represent up to 79 per cent of the total IDP population

129,174 refugees

11,800 asylum-seekers

Funding:

USD 271 M required for 2021 operations

IDP Response

Shelter needs are increasing for newly displaced Yemenis across Marib. Since the beginning of the year, close to 24,000 persons have been uprooted by armed clashes, shelling and air strikes in Marib governorate – a region that is already hosting a quarter of Yemen’s four million internally displaced persons. Most sought safety in urban centres and some 150 informal settlements. A recent UNHCR needs assessment indicates living conditions in settlements remain deplorable, with shelter kits, clean water, latrines, electricity and health facilities in short supply. As women and children constitute 80 per cent of those displaced, they are the ones who suffer most from the ensuing overcrowding, lack of privacy and limited access to basic services. With the support of partner Society for Humanitarian Solidarity (SHS), UNHCR is providing basic household items, legal assistance and psychosocial support across seven settlements in Marib’s Sirwah district, which hosts some 20,000 individuals. Additionally, UNHCR is distributing cash for rent to over 2,800 families, as part cash-based interventions to assist some 6,000 families at risk of eviction.

Thousands of displaced Yemeni families are currently faced with the threat of eviction. During the last week, authorities in Marib shared a list of 2,800 families at risk of eviction from 13 IDP hosting sites on privately-owned land, for which a relocation solution is urgently needed. In addition, at least five families were evicted from a site that was hosting IDPs in Amran governorate by the landlord and relocated to another area within the same site; a further 28 families have been ordered to relocate in the next week.
The UNHCR-led CCCM Cluster is coordinating with authorities to avoid similar displacements in the future.

Yemen is currently observing a significant rise in COVID-19 infections in what is forecasted to be a third wave of the virus. Despite limited testing and monitoring, cases are rising daily in governorates in the south – though the current wave is believed to be considerably lower than in March/April this year. As of August 2021, it is estimated that only 1 per cent of the Yemeni population has been vaccinated. UNHCR continues to support a number of clinics with test, equipment, medications, and ambulances, as well as leading awareness-raising activities on COVID-19.

UNHCR cash assistance programme remains a critical lifeline for thousands of vulnerable displaced Yemeni and refugee families. Since the beginning of the year,
UNHCR has distributed USD 54 M in cash assistance, benefitting over one million individuals (some 181,500 families) across the country. This includes a total of 971,000 displaced Yemenis (156,500 families) and 32,700 refugees (12,500 families). Recent post distribution monitoring data reveals up to 88 per cent of beneficiaries spent their assistance on food, and over 30 per cent on rent.