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‘A child dies every 10 minutes’ in war-torn Yemen: Health Ministry

A malnourished Yemeni toddler is held by a woman at a clinic run by a humanitarian organization in the port city of Hudaydah on November 3, 2019. (Photo by AFP)

Yemeni officials have raised the alarm about a worsening humanitarian crisis as a result of the Saudi-led war and blockade against the impoverished Arab country, saying that “a child dies every 10 minutes” in Yemen.

The Yemeni Health Ministry issued the warning on Tuesday and said shortfalls in aid funding were exacerbating the humanitarian situation in Yemen.

According to the United Nations, acute malnutrition rates among Yemeni children under five are the highest ever recorded.

Last month, the world body warned that Yemen is in imminent danger of the worst famine the world has witnessed in decades.

Also on Tuesday, the United Nations (UN) highlighted the need for a ceasefire in Yemen and warned that the Saudi-led aggression had claimed the lives of 233,000 people in the impoverished Arab country over the last six years.

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in a report that, "This large number is unfortunate and unacceptable."

According to the report, Yemen is currently facing the worst humanitarian crisis in the world, and more than 80% of its inhabitants are in need of humanitarian assistance and support.

Saudi Arabia and a number of its allies launched the war on Yemen in March 2015 to suppress an uprising that had toppled a Riyadh-friendly regime.

The war has taken a heavy toll on Yemen's infrastructure, destroying hospitals, schools, and factories. The UN says over 24 million Yemenis are in dire need of humanitarian aid, including 10 million suffering from extreme levels of hunger.

Children are among the most vulnerable victims of the Saudi war on Yemen, but the issue has barely drawn any international response.The UN children's agency warned in late June that the shortage of humanitarian assistance amid the coronavirus pandemic threatened to push more children in Yemen to the brink of starvation.

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