I did not have a chance to post the news yesterday so I’m sharing two news articles in this post since they’re about the same topic. Click the links to read the full articles.Embed from Getty Images
Yemenis queue up at a gas station amid increasing shortages in the Yemeni capital Sanaa, on November 9, 2017. The war gripping Yemen has killed around 8,650 people since a Saudi-led military intervention in 2015, and brought the impoverished country to the brink of famine. The conflict is underscored by the regional rivalry between Iran, a supporter of Yemen’s Shiite Huthi rebels, and Saudi Arabia, which heads a nine-member coalition backing the president. / AFP PHOTO / Mohammed HUWAIS (Photo credit should read MOHAMMED HUWAIS/AFP/Getty Images)
From the Washington Post Fuel crisis hits Yemen’s capital as Saudis tighten blockade
SANAA, Yemen — Hundreds of cars lined the main roads of Yemen’s capital after the rebels who control the city ordered fuel stations to close on Wednesday, accusing merchants of taking advantage of a Saudi blockade to hike prices.
A Saudi-led military coalition tightened its blockade in Yemen this week after a ballistic missile fired by Houthi rebels was intercepted near the Saudi capital. Aid groups say the measures will exacerbate an already severe humanitarian crisis in the impoverished, war-torn country.
Fuel prices have spiked by 50 percent since Monday. Hassan al-Zaydi, a spokesman for the Houthi-run Oil Ministry, said merchants had refused orders to keep prices fixed, prompting authorities to shut the fuel stations down.
“It will aggregate the already dire humanitarian situation,” said George Khoury, the head of the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in Yemen.
“We want to be crystal clear to the international community. Any disruption will have catastrophic consequence on the lives of hundreds of thousands people and children,” he said.
The coalition announced the closure of all ports in Yemen as of Monday. All humanitarian flights have been grounded, with trucks stuck at crossings and ships carrying basic necessities like fuel, wheat and other food being ordered to leave.
The Houthis control northern Yemen, including the capital. The internationally recognized government is based in Saudi Arabia, and its control over southern Yemen, which is also home to separatist groups and Islamic extremists, is limited.Embed from Getty Images
A Yemeni worker delivers merchandise in a supermarket in the Yemeni capital Sanaa on November 9, 2017. The war gripping Yemen has killed around 8,650 people since a Saudi-led military intervention in 2015, and brought the impoverished country to the brink of famine. The conflict is underscored by the regional rivalry between Iran, a supporter of Yemen’s Shiite Huthi rebels, and Saudi Arabia, which heads a nine-member coalition backing the president. / AFP PHOTO / Mohammed HUWAIS (Photo credit should read MOHAMMED HUWAIS/AFP/Getty Images)
From Al Jazeera Saudi siege on Yemen: ‘Hundreds will die within a week’
Doctors in the capital told Al Jazeera pharmacies across Sanaa that were already struggling with a critical shortage of specialist drugs, would be unable to treat cancer, diabetes and renal failure patients by the start of next week.
“We’re running dangerously low on medical supplies and won’t have anywhere near the necessary vials of pain-relief medication, insulin, and other specialist medicines for our patients,” said Abdulrahman al-Ansi, a doctor at Sanaa’s al-Mutawkil hospital.
“Unless Saudi Arabia eases its restrictions and allows food and medical supplies, I could end up losing all of my cancer patients – even those suffering from diabetes – [a treatable disease] will die. Hundreds will perish in the next week alone.”
The kingdom has defended the blockade, which bars aid groups like Doctors without Borders, Oxfam and UN agencies from delivering aid, claiming it is aimed at preventing weapons being smuggled into Yemen by its regional rival, Iran.
Tehran has rejected allegations of arming the Houthis, calling them “malicious, irresponsible, destructive and provocative”.
Aid organisations in Yemen said they were “greatly alarmed” by Saudi Arabia’s decision, warning it could “bring millions of people closer to starvation and death”.
“The current stock of vaccines in the country will only last one month. If it is not replenished, outbreaks of communicable diseases, such as polio and measles, are to be expected with fatal consequences, particularly for children under five years of age and those already suffering from malnutrition,” said Oxfam, Save the Children, the Norwegian Refugee Council and 19 other aid groups in a joint statement.
The 22 humanitarian groups also warned Yemen had only six weeks of food aid remaining for about seven million Yemenis who are facing “famine-like conditions”.