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Yemen Humanitarian Update Covering 22 March - 17 April 2019 | Issue 6 [EN/AR]

 

KEY ISSUES

• Emergency Relief Coordinator and Under-Secretary-General, Mark Lowcock, urges donors to convert pledges into cash as the Yemen humanitarian response faces funding crisis.

• Humanitarian partners continue to scale up to meet the needs of 68,000 families displaced in Hajjah Governorate.

• Rising numbers of displaced people endure alarming conditions while partners face supply and funding shortfall.

• Rapid Response Mechanism assisted 213,589 families between June 2018 and March 2019.

• Average cost of the minimum food basket is 102 per cent higher than pre-crisis.

• Inter-Agency mission to Marib and Al Jawf identifies IDP crisis.

• Cholera Task Force expands response as suspected cholera cases reach 194,595.

• Fuel scarcity results in price hikes and lengthy queues at gas stations.

UNDER-SECRETARY-GENERAL IMPLORES DONORS TO CONVERT PLEDGES INTO CASH AS YEMEN HUMANITARIAN RESPONSE FACES FUNDING CRISIS

In his address to the Security Council on 15 April, the Under-Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator (USG/ERC), Mark Lowcock, gave an update on the situation in Yemen, highlighting that while violence has reduced in Al Hudaydah City, it has escalated elsewhere in the country. Other major issues raised by the USG/ERC included the resurgence of cholera and continuing risk of famine. Critically, the USG/ERC pointed to the challenges that humanitarians continue to face while trying to save the lives of millions of people battling hunger and disease. The first challenge is access – obstacles include lack of safe passage for aid delivery, customs and visa restrictions, and delays in approving project agreements. The second “potentially insuperable” challenge is funding. Nearly four months into the year, the UN response plan has only received US$267 million of the $2.6 billion pledged in February, 10 per cent of the amount pledged, 6 per cent of the total requirements, and less than 80 per cent of what had been received at this point in 2018. The USG/ ERC urged donors to make payments, otherwise UN agencies and partners would have no option but to close or scale back programmes, to do so, he said, “…at a time when we are struggling to prevent widespread famine and roll back cholera and other disease - would be catastrophic.” The USG/ERC ended with a plea for peace, “Without peace, we will simply go on treating the symptoms of this crisis, instead of addressing the cause.”

PARTNERS SCALING UP TO MEET THE NEEDS OF 68,000 DISPLACED IN HAJJAH

Fighting in Hajjah has triggered two mass population movements since February. Between mid-February and mid-March, an estimated 8,400 families were displaced from Kushar District as a result of clashes between Hajour tribesmen and the de-facto authorities. At the end of March, fighting in Midi and Hayran led to the displacement of 17,000 families from Bani Hassan Sub-District. By the end of March, up to 68,000 families were estimated to be displaced within or from Hajjah; 41,000 families are in Abs and 2,500 are in northern Al Hudaydah. Most of those displaced, around 58,700 families, are scattered in 305 sites for internally displaced persons (IDPs) in 18 districts; the majority are in 167 IDP sites in Abs District. Humanitarian partners estimate that in the worst case scenario, the shifting frontlines could displace up to 400,000 more people in the governorate.

A multi-cluster mission to Hajjah between 30 March and 2 April found gaps in the response to the displacement crisis. Negotiations are underway with the local authorities about providing assistance to people living close to conflict zones. With hundreds of thousands of local people and IDPs close to an active frontline, and fighting having already damaged civilian infrastructure, humanitarian partners are working to improve protection monitoring and deconflict infrastructure.

A comprehensive preparedness plan focusing on prepositioning supplies and identifying sites for fleeing IDPs is being developed. The Logistics Cluster is leading on the creation of additional warehousing capacity, and upwards of 22,000 non-food items (NFIs) and 8,500 Emergency Shelter Kits (ESKs) are being routed to Hajjah as part of the response scale-up. The mobilization of more partners is underway and OCHA is expediting the opening of an office in Hajjah.

In the second week of April, Rapid Response Mechanism (RRM) partners supported 1,470 newly displaced families in Hajjah and Al Hudaydah Governorates. In addition, Agricultural Development Organisation (ADO) provided cash assistance to 1,500 families; Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) provided RRM kits to 6,700 families and registered another 1,400 families; Danish Refugee Council (DRC) started emergency water trucking in three IDP sites in Doreyna al Olya, Doreyna al Sofla and Walla; and Oxfam installed 300 latrines, 30 new water points and 30 water storage tanks in Abs District and provided hygiene kits to 4,000 families. To strengthen operational capacity, UN agencies have assigned 29 UN staff to be based in Hajjah, some have already started working from the city.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs:
To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit https://www.unocha.org/.

Webspace(s): 
Organization(s): 
United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Original Publication Date: 
17 Apr 2019
Map/Infographic Type: 
Humanitarian Update