The European Union is boosting humanitarian assistance to Yemen by more than 160 million euros in 2019, thus bringing its total support to about 710 million euros since the beginning of the protracted crisis in 2015. EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management Christos Stylianides said that Yemen was facing the world’s worst humanitarian crisis with four out of five people being in need of urgent assistance.
More than 24 million, around 80% of the Yemeni population, are in need of humanitarian assistance, while 3.5 million have been displaced and 10 million are threatened by famine. ”With millions now threatened by famine, all must be done to deliver emergency support on the ground. For this humanitarian organizations need full access. Our new funding will allow partners to provide more food, nutrition, health services, shelter, sanitation, as well as education and protection programs.” The EU leader, however, recognized that the only solution to the crisis was a political one.
The EU has been key in mobilizing support for the Yemen crisis and in 2018 its aid reached almost 14 million Yemenis. Brussels has also repeatedly called on all parties to the conflict to respect International Humanitarian Law and prioritize the protection of civilians and civil infrastructure. The situation in Yemen is dire and Yemenis are often targeted in attacks. They also face a de facto blockade of imports, partial payment of public servants’ salaries, devaluation of the national currency and hurdles to the provision of humanitarian aid. Moreover, the goods and services are impacted by the vicious cycle of hyperinflation, which has brought the Yemeni economy on the brink of collapse.