Yemen – Unfolding humanitarian crisis threatens to destabilize region

SHAFAQNA – UN rights chief has said that Yemen is “on the verge of total collapse” as Saudi-led coalition continues to bomb Houthi positions.

“The situation in Yemen is extremely alarming, with dozens of civilians killed over the past four days,” UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein said on Tuesday.

“The country seems to be on the verge of total collapse”.

Aid groups have warned of a humanitarian crisis unfolding with air and sea blockades making it impossible to send desperately needed assistance as casualties mount.

The UN children’s fund said that at least 62 children had been killed and 30 injured during the fighting over the past week.

“Children are in desperate need of protection, and all parties to the conflict should do all in their power to keep children safe,” said UNICEF’s Julien Harneis.

Doctors Without Borders (MSF) said it had received more than 550 patients in the southern city of Aden since March 19 as a result of the Saudi-led bombing.

“We urgently need to find ways to get humanitarian relief and personnel inside the country,” said MSF’s Greg Elder.

He denounced reported attacks by Houthi-linked fighters on three hospitals in Daleh that caused an unknown number of casualties.

Amnesty International accused the Saudi-led coalition of “turning a blind eye to civilian deaths” as it reported four children were among six burned to death in strikes on Ibb, in central Yemen.

The UN has also criticised the deadly bombing of a camp for displaced people in north Yemen, saying it was a violation of international law.

“We have not identified who is responsible for this attack,” UN spokesman Farhan Haq said. “Whichever forces are hitting them are in violation of the law, there should be accountability for that and ultimately all such attacks have to cease.”

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon separately said he was “deeply concerned” by reports of numerous civilian deaths from the military campaign against the Houthi rebels.

While Saudi Arabia and its Arab coalition have alleged they seek to promote stability in Yemen and enable democracy, experts have slammed such narrative as preposterous noting that brutal democracies could not possibly ambition to bring about democracy.

Mohammed Al Amad, an analyst in Yemen explained Saudi Arabia is merely looking to destroy Yemen and seize control of Bab Al Mandab.

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