Friday, May 31, 2024

UN Forced to Reduce Yemen Rations, Worsening Food Crisis


Title: Yemen Faces Deepening Humanitarian Crisis as Funding Shortages Hit Food Assistance Programs


Yemen, already grappling with one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises, is now facing a deepening crisis as funding shortages threaten to reduce food assistance to over four million Yemenis. The United Nations’ World Food Programme (WFP) has warned that without new funding, the agency will be forced to make difficult decisions about further cuts to its food assistance programs across the country. This article delves into the dire situation in Yemen and highlights the urgent need for increased funding to alleviate the suffering of millions.

The Impact of Funding Shortages

The WFP estimates that more than four million people, including vulnerable women and children, will receive less food assistance if additional funding is not secured. Yemen already suffers from some of the highest malnutrition rates globally, and these cuts will exacerbate the situation. Moreover, the actual number of affected individuals could be even higher due to major cuts announced across different programs.

The Dilemma Faced by WFP

Richard Ragan, WFP’s Yemen representative, acknowledges the tough reality of having to make decisions that involve taking food from the hungry to feed the starving. The agency is fully aware of the suffering these cuts will cause, but without adequate funding, they are left with no choice. Yemen, the poorest country in the Arabian Peninsula, has been embroiled in a devastating conflict for eight years, further aggravating the humanitarian crisis.

Yemen’s Ongoing Humanitarian Crisis

The conflict in Yemen began in 2014 when Houthi rebels, backed by Iran, seized the capital city of Sanaa. In response, a Saudi-led coalition intervened in 2015 to support the internationally recognized government. Although fighting has largely subsided since a truce expired in October, hunger levels in Yemen remain unprecedented. According to the United Nations, 17 million Yemenis are experiencing food insecurity, with one million women and 2.2 million children under five requiring treatment for acute malnutrition.

The Urgent Need for Funding

Over the next six months, the WFP requires $1.05 billion in funding to sustain its operations in Yemen. However, only 28 percent of this amount has been secured so far. The agency emphasizes that Yemen will remain one of its largest food assistance operations, but the funding shortages will significantly reduce its programs in the country. This comes at a time when more people are becoming severely malnourished, further exacerbating the crisis.

Previous Funding Shortages

This is not the first time that the WFP has been forced to slash food aid in Yemen due to funding constraints. In June last year, the agency had to reduce food assistance for 13 million Yemenis by over 50 percent. The recurring funding shortages have a devastating impact on the already vulnerable population, pushing them further into hunger and malnutrition.


The dire situation in Yemen demands immediate attention and increased funding from the international community. With millions of Yemenis already suffering from food insecurity and malnutrition, the funding shortages faced by the WFP will only worsen the crisis. Urgent action is needed to ensure that the most vulnerable, especially women and children, receive the necessary food assistance to survive. It is crucial for governments, organizations, and individuals to come together and support Yemen in its fight against hunger and deprivation. Failure to act swiftly will result in catastrophic consequences for millions of innocent lives caught in the crossfire of war and famine.

Latest stories