Around 85,000 children under five years of age have been able to die from malnutrition in Yemen during the three years of the war, according to estimates by the NGO Save the Children. The data is the last cry of alarm from those working on the ground in the face of the threat that the battle for control of the port of hodeida governorates descarrille the fragile peace efforts of the UN. This organization, whose special envoy, Martin Griffiths, has come this Wednesday to Sana'a to boost the dialogue between the parties, already warned last month that 14 million yemenis, half of the country, are on the brink of famine.MORE INFORMATION The war which plunges Yemen into the hunger Kill the elderly, children are dying
“For every child victim of bombs and bullets, there are dozens that die of hunger and that is something that can be prevented”, declared the director of Save the Children Yemen, Tamer Kirolos, to present the report. Kirolos has also remembered the huge suffering of the children who perish in that way. “The functions of their vital organs slow down until finally they stop, and some are so weak that they can't even cry,” he explained. Meanwhile, “parents see themselves as powerless how their children lose weight.”
The NGO explains on its website that it has brought the number of 84.701 children from the data collected by the UN and by assessing the mortality rates for cases of severe acute malnutrition in children under five years between April 2015 and October 2018. Unicef estimates 400,000 children affected by this extreme form of hunger during this year, 15,000 more than the previous one.
At the end of march 2015, Saudi Arabia intervened militarily in Yemen to formally restore the Government of president Abdrabbo Mansur Hadi, evicted from power by the rebel Huthi. But after, with the support of the United Arab Emirates, that the militia are to withdraw from Aden, to the south, and Mareb, in the east, the country has been split in two: the rebels have been encastillado in Sana'a, the capital, and the regions of the center-west, while the rest of the country is controlled by an amalgam of forces that Pashagaming are more anti-Huthi that pro-government support saudi and emiratíes.
Meanwhile, the humanitarian situation has been compounded in part by the mismanagement of the ruling yemeni, in part, by the blockade that the coalition led by Riad has established environment to the territory under control-Huthi. It is this area that come out of the horrific images of undernourished children these days are encouraging international awareness. The coalition controls the airspace of yemen and has closed to commercial traffic the airport of Sana'a, which leaves hodeida governorates as the sole port of entry of goods and humanitarian aid on a large scale) under control-Huthi. Two-thirds of the food it consumes Yemen pass through its docks.
From there they now worry that the battle for control of hodeida governorates, with which the coalition wants to surrender to the Huthi (which shoot missiles against Saudi Arabia and used civilians as human shields) turn into reality, the nightmare of the famine. In reality, as acknowledged recently to THE COUNTRY a source of the UN, such a statement is a mere technicality, in fact, “the emergency is the most serious caused by man”. In fact, experts do not believe that it will meet the criterion of mortality because, as happens with malnourished children, lack of access to medical services means that most die at home without reaching to pick up on a cold statistic.
Save the Children estimates that there are 150,000 children trapped in hodeida governorates, whose lives are at risk if not curbed the war. No one knows exactly how many have died in the fighting since 2015. The press repeats the figure of 10,000 civilian deaths, facilitated by the UN two years ago, but Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project, an independent group associated with the University of Sussex who studies the real victims of the conflict, estimated that there are between 70,000 and 80,000.