New footage of haggard adults and skeletal minors shows routine Yemeni existence roughly two years into Saudi Arabia
’s invasion of the impoverished country.
The video, shot by the French news
agency AFP at Thawra Hospital in the western Hudaydah Province on Saturday, came less than a week after the UN relief aid chief warned Yemen
was facing a “serious risk of famine.”
Locals are seen using jerrycans for water storage amid acute shortages. A woman is seen holding up a baby with an extended belly, while a local points to lesions across another person’s body.
Inside the health facility, medical staff are struggling to sustain malnourished infants, and adults are seen scattered around in morbid states.
Speaking during a visit to Yemen’s port city of Aden on Tuesday, UN Under-Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs Stephen O’Brien said seven million people in the country did not know where their next meal was coming from.
Of that figure, almost 3.3 million, including 2.1 million children, are suffering from acute malnourishment, he said. Nineteen million out of the country’s 26-million-strong population are in pressing need of humanitarian assistance, O’Brien added.
The Saudi military launched its military campaign in support of Yemen’s former government and imposed an all-out naval blockade on the country. The civilian death toll from the bombardments has exceeded 12,000.
The US and the UK provide coordinates for bombing sorties and military advice as well as the bulk of weapons in Saudi Arabia’s ongoing campaign which has seriously damaged Yemen’s infrastructure.
US drone attacks
On Saturday, drones fired missiles at suspected targets in two separate attacks in southern Yemen, in what appeared to be a third successive day of US airstrikes in the Arab country.
Tribal sources and residents said one of the aircraft struck a vehicle travelling on the outskirts of the Ahwar city, killing two people.
Another targeted what was described as a crowd of suspected al-Qaeda militants in al-Saeed in the adjacent province of Shabwa, but there were no reports of casualties.
The Saudi invasion has plunged Yemen into chaos and created a breeding ground for terrorist groups such as al-Qaeda.
In January, US Special Forces carried out an attack against a purported position of al-Qaeda militants in the central province of Bayda. According to some reports, a total of 57 people, mostly civilians, were killed in the assault.
The US military said one service member was also killed and three others sustained injuries, leading to criticism of the conduct and the very rationale behind the raid.
On Friday, the US military said it had carried out over 30 airstrikes over the previous two days in three Yemeni provinces.