UN: Saudis Are Behind Yemen’s Humanitarian Crisis
With 18.8 million people in need of humanitarian aid, including 10.3 million requiring immediate assistance, Yemen is now the second largest humanitarian crisis in the world, after Syria.
The United Nations is warning that the war is rapidly pushing the country towards social, economic and institutional collapse. More worrying, the Saudi-led, US-backed war on Yemen and its economic consequences are driving the largest food security emergency in the world.
According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), over 17 million people are currently food insecure, of whom 6.8 million are severely food insecure and require immediate food assistance, and two million acutely malnourished children. The Yemeni population amounts to 27.4 million inhabitants.
Strange enough, this yet to be a wake-up call for the UN, a world organization that is duty-bound under its own charter to stop the Saudi war and avert the humanitarian catastrophe. All the world organization says now is that it needs 2.1 billion dollars in funding to deliver crucial food, nutrition, health and other lifesaving assistance. The UN plans to hold a high-level pledging meeting for the humanitarian crisis in Yemen. Co-hosted by the governments of Switzerland and Sweden, the conference will take place at UN in Geneva on 25 April.
This is never enough. What happens after the money runs out? What Yemen needs now is an end to the illegal war and this could only happen if the world organization pressures the Saudis to stop their regime change campaign and escape the trap of endless war which violates International Law, International Humanitarian Law, and United Nations Charter. After that, the world community could come together to prevent the impending humanitarian catastrophe. Lest we forget, even before the war in mid-March 2015, Yemen had faced enormous levels of humanitarian needs stemming from years of poverty, under-development, environmental decline, intermittent conflict, and weak rule of law.
At any rate, the Saudi-led, US-backed air strikes and fighting continue to inflict heavy casualties, damage public and private infrastructure, and impede delivery of humanitarian assistance. The criminal syndicate has created a vast crisis in which millions of people face tremendous threats to their safety and well-being, and the most vulnerable struggle to survive. Millions have been displaced, roughly 73 percent are living with host families, and 20 percent in collective centers or spontaneous settlements. A substantial number of returnees lives in damaged houses, unable to afford repairs and face serious protection risks. If this is not enough for the UN to react, we don’t know what else is.
One last point: The stated objective of the Saudis to restore to power in Sanaa what they call the “legitimate government” of ousted president Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who had been driven out by people, will never materialize. As with the conflict in Syria, the problem the Saudis face is that their objectives are not achievable by bombing civilians, and they are not achievable at all - even with help from the American and British militaries. Yemen has always been difficult to conquer, and now it is effectively impossible for the United States and its Saudi vassals to establish uncontested authority over the entire country.
A reminder that the United Nations should demand the Saudis halt this utterly vicious campaign, lift the illegal blockade, and pull back from all the territory they or their mercenaries and allied militants have occupied since the war began. The UN should impose sanctions on Riyadh if they refuse to do that. The world organization should also stop endorsing Saudi Arabia’s vicious position, which is bad for regional peace and security. This policy reversal could have huge effects on the ground in Yemen, because the international bullies are indifferent to civilian lives and do not consider themselves subject to UN requirements.
It is time for the world organization to do its job, because Saudi Arabia is violating International Law, and the United States is acting in a perceived self-interest that is distorted and unethical. The world organization must stand for justice and peace. That is what it was created for. It won't be able to serve that purpose until it stops endorsing the Saudi position. Given that:
- The resistance movement of Ansarullah is participating in the political structure to the best of their ability.
- Ansarullah does not receive any aid from Iran and is not representing Iran in their fight against the Saudi-led aggressors.
- The Saudis' alleged target, the Ansarullah movement, is an elected, legitimate and popular political organization.
- The Saudi-led, US-backed campaign is an intrusion into the internal politics of Yemen.
- The Saudi campaign against Yemen constitutes a crime against peace and the site of numerous war crimes.
It is time for the United Nations to act on behalf of the oppressed people of Yemen and put an end to the Saudi aggression. It’s the only way for them to have the opportunity to live and develop the potential of the sovereign nation of Yemen independent of outside influence.