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The war in Yemen, which has lasted for seven years, will have caused the death of 377,000 people, direct and indirect victims of the conflict, by the end of the year 2021, said Tuesday the UN in a report. & nbsp;
Almost 60% of deaths, or about 227,000 people, are due to the indirect consequences of the conflict, such as lack of clean water, hunger and diseases, according to this document from the United Nations Development Program (UNDP). According to these estimates, the fighting will have claimed 150,000 people by the end of this year.
The conflict pits Iranian-backed Houthi rebels against Yemeni government forces, backed since 2015 by a Saudi-led military coalition.
Seven years of war have had “catastrophic effects on the country. development of the nation ”, according to the UNDP, which adds that“ access to health care is limited or non-existent ”and that“ the economy is on the verge of collapse ”.
The Most of the indirect victims are “children particularly vulnerable to malnutrition and undernutrition,” says UNDP.
“In 2021, a Yemeni child under the age of five dies every nine minutes as a result of the conflict”, it is written.
Worst humanitarian disaster
< p> According to the UNDP, “1.3 million people” are threatened with death if a peace agreement is not reached by 2030.
“An increasing proportion of these deaths will occur … due to the indirect consequences that the crisis has on livelihoods, food prices and the deterioration of basic services, such as health and education”, it says.
Escalating fighting, including tank battles and regular bombardments by planes and drones, has destroyed even the most basic of infrastructure in some areas, the report continues. .
Millions of people are on the brink of famine, with two-thirds of Yemenis dependent on humanitarian aid, according to the UN.
“Yemen is the worst and the biggest humanitarian disaster in the world, and this disaster continues to worsen,” said the UN and “more than 80% of the population is in need of humanitarian aid”.
“Millions of Yemenis continue to suffer from conflict, trapped in poverty, with few opportunities to find work and a livelihood,” said Achim Steiner, UNDP Administrator.
The organization had previously recalled that the level of development of Yemen, the poorest country in the Gulf, had fallen by two decades because of the conflict.
Intensification of the fighting
While the UNDP hoped to achieve “middle income status by 2050” for the country if the war ended immediately, few signs on the ground seem to point in this direction.
< p>In recent weeks, fighting has intensified on several fronts. Sources close to the Houthis say nearly 15,000 of their fighters have been killed since June alone near the strategic town of Marib, the last major government stronghold in the oil-rich north of Yemen.
< p> Two military officials of the Yemeni government told AFP that more than 1,200 of their fighters were killed in this area during the same period.
The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said on Tuesday it was “extremely worried about the safety and security of civilians in Marib province, including the displaced”, estimated at “one million”.
“More than 40,000 people have had to flee Marib since September, ”UNHCR spokesperson Shabia Mantoo said in Geneva.
“ Many newly displaced people are suffering from acute diarrhea, malaria and acute respiratory infections ”, she added.
In mid-November, Houthi rebels took control of a large area south of Hod eida, a strategic port city in western Yemen essential for the delivery of humanitarian aid.