2.2mn Yemeni children close to famine, 70% rise in those killed over past year – UNICEF

Children in Yemen are teetering between life and death, as 2.2 million suffer from acute malnutrition, while those killed by hostilities jumped 70 percent last year, UNICEF warned on the second anniversary of the war in the Middle East’s poorest country.
Two years into the Yemeni conflict, children continue to suffer the consequences and will soon succumb to starvation without prompt humanitarian assistance and viable efforts to bring peace to the war-ravaged country, UNICEF said in a report entitled ‘Falling through the Cracks.’
Nearly half a million children suffer from severe acute malnutrition, which is manifest in grotesquely slim bodies and stunted growth – a 200-percent increase since 2014, the report warned. The fighting and devastation has forced Yemenis into buying cheaper food or skipping meals, while around 80 percent of families are in debt or borrowing money just to feed their children.
UNIECF, which is now spearheading relief efforts in Yemen, said nearly 2.2 million children are currently acutely malnourished and require urgent care. Children suffering from severe acute malnutrition are ten times more likely to die than their healthy peers because their weakened immune systems leave them vulnerable to diseases. Consequently, UNICEF has classified them as having a life-threatening condition.
Apart from deaths caused directly by fighting, UNICEF cited previous UN estimates warning that at least one Yemeni child dies of “preventable causes like malnutrition, diarrhea, and respiratory tract infections” every 10 minutes, as the country is gradually turning into one of the largest food and malnutrition emergencies in the world.
“Cemeteries are filling up with small unmarked graves, the deaths of children unreported to authorities, their suffering invisible to the world,” the UN agency warned.
Source: https://www.rt.com/news/382418-unicef-yemen-children-famine/

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