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Guterres: Yemen needs $2.4bn in aid in 2020

June 3, 2020 at 11:10 am

United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres holds a press conference at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, United States on 1 August 2019 [Atılgan Özdil/Anadolu Agency]

Yemen needs $2.4 billion in humanitarian aid this year, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said yesterday.

In a statement issued to during the virtual donors’ conference for Yemen 2020, chaired by Saudi under the auspices of the United Nations, Guterres stated: “Aid agencies [working in Yemen] estimate they will need up to 2.41 billion dollars to cover essential aid from June to December.”

He stressed that the failure to provide funds would lead to suspending more than 30 out of the 41 UN programs which support Yemen, within weeks.

The conflict in Yemen has left “24 million people in need of humanitarian aid, 2 million malnourished children, and 80,000 displaced persons.”

READ: UN suspends 80% of reproductive health facilities in Yemen

Guterres also indicated that 110,000 cholera infections have been recorded in Yemen since the beginning of this year, in addition to real concerns over the collapse of the Yemeni health system due to the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic.

In turn, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, Dominic Raab, announced that the UK would provide a £160 million ($200 million) aid package to counter the coronavirus outbreak in Yemen.

Raab said in a statement that “the British aid package will be a lifeline for thousands of Yemenis who are now facing the risk of contracting the Coronavirus.”

As of Sunday, Yemen had recorded a total of 323 cases of COVID-19, including 80 deaths, and 14 recoveries.

This statistic does not include the Houthi-controlled areas, where the movement had announced, as of 18 May, four cases of the life-threatening disease, including one death.

Aid agencies believe the number of cases in the country are much higher than official numbers indicate amid accusations of a coverup and fears that locals are not seeking medical attention as a result of the conflict.

UNHCR: No funds to support 25,000 families in Yemen