Civilians at extreme risk from airstrikes in Hodeida
A man and his sons travel to collect water underneath the Hajjah Road Bridge, in Al Hudaydah, Yemen, which was damaged in an airstrike in mid-2016. (File photo: Giles Clarke/OCHA)
Sana’a, 29 July 2018 – On 26, 27 and 28 July, airstrikes occurred near a reproductive health centre and public laboratory in Hodeidah and hit and damaged a sanitation facility in Zabid and a water station, which supplies the majority of the water to Hodeidah City.
“For weeks, we’ve been doing everything possible to help hundreds of thousands of people living in and near Hodeidah” said Ms. Lise Grande, the Humanitarian Coordinator for Yemen. “These airstrikes are putting innocent civilians at extreme risk.”
“Since the start of the recent military offensive, humanitarian partners have been providing food, water, emergency kits, cash and health care,” said Ms. Grande. “Despite working under some of the most difficult conditions imaginable, we’ve reached 80 percent of the people displaced by fighting with some form of assistance,” said Ms. Grande.
“Cholera is already present in neighborhoods across the city and governorate. Damage to sanitation, water and health facilities jeopardizes everything we are trying to do,” said Ms. Grande. “We could be one airstrike away from an unstoppable epidemic.”
“All parties to the conflict are obliged under international humanitfarian law to do everything possible to protect civilians and ensure they have access to the assistance they are entitled to and need to survive,” said Ms. Grande.
Yemen is the worst humanitarian crisis in the world. Twenty-two million people, 75 per cent of the population, require some form of humanitarian assistance and protection, including 8.4 million who do not know where their next meal will come from.
The UN and partners are requesting USD 3 billion through the 2018 Humanitarian Response Plan to support millions of people in need across the country. To date, USD 1.8 billion, 60 per cent of the resources required, has been received.