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January 18, 2020
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Yemeni mothers forced to choose which child starves

SANA:  Human tragedies are unfolding in war-torn Yemen as mothers are being forced to leave their children to starve.

A humanitarian group said that people in the war-torn country are facing a catastrophic shortage of food and other supplies.

Action Against Hunger said that people were struggling to survive in the country hit by worst civil war.

Valentina Ferrante, the group’s country director for Yemen, said that they were wary of the situation in the country, which has turned catastrophic.

If a family has not the resources to feed the entire family they are compelled to select who to feed. Sometimes you get up to a point where a mother is literally forced not to feed certain members of the family, most probably the youngest one.

Yemen, one of the poorest Arab countries, is locked in a war that pits Iran-aligned Houthi rebels against the government backed by Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and the West.

The conflict has left 53 per cent of the population in urgent need of food aid and famine was a danger if immediate action was not taken, the United Nations said this month.

The warring parties on Thursday agreed to cease fighting for the Houthi-held port city of Hodeidah, which is the main entry point for both commercial imports and aid supplies.

Ferrante said the biggest challenge in delivering humanitarian aid was not money but gaining safe access to conflict areas which were being hit by airstrikes.

“We need to pass the message that we are neutral, so we are not involved in politics, we just need to deliver high-quality humanitarian aid interventions,” she said.

Aid groups hailed the deal in Sweden as a “landmark first step” towards ending the conflict.

“The agreement from Sweden is incredibly encouraging to all of us who seek an end to the war and suffering in Yemen,” said Johan Mooij, Yemen country director for aid agency CARE.