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The New Arab

Yemen: The tragedy deepens

Date of publication: 22 April, 2017

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Special coverage: A war fuelled by geopolitical rivals is tearing apart the Middle East's poorest nation. Now famine stalks a landmine-strewn country where millions have been forced from their homes.
Yemen was the Middle East's poorest nation even before the ravages of the civil war. Now the people here are more desperate than ever, with much of the country plunged into famine as warring groups block urgently needed food aid and medical resources.

When President Ali Abdullah Saleh was ousted in 2012, few expected him to ally with his former enemies, the Iran-backed Houthis, to overthrow the government in Sanaa, forcing the internationally recognised president, Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, to flee.

Since a coalition of Arab nations, led by Saudi Arabia, sent their militaries into Yemen to support Hadi in 2015, the situation has worsened dramatically for the people of Yemen. At least three million people have been displaced from their homes, with more than a million Yemeni refugees arriving in neighbouring countries.

Apartment buildings, World Heritage sites and even hospitals have been targeted by the warring parties. Nearly two million children are at risk of death by malnutrition. The situation in Yemen has been classified as the highest grade of humanitarian disaster.

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