EU Increases Aid To Strife-torn Yemen For Basic Services

19 Nov 2019 by Staff - Water Diplomat
BRUSSELS, Belgium

The European Commission has approved an additional $87 Million USD in aid for public services, health and education in Yemen, bringing EU support to $485 Million USD since 2015 when violent conflict erupted. The conflict in Yemen has resulted in the worst humanitarian crisis in the world, with unprecedented levels of hunger, poverty and spread of preventable disease.

The EU support puts emphasis on the situation of vulnerable communities affected by the on-going conflict and the consequent humanitarian crisis. The aid aims to improve health services, access to drinking water and food, primary and hospital care, sanitation, and to invest in education. In addition, funds will be used to help local councils promote better revenue collection and spending, and improved waste management systems. Some funding will also go to the private sector, especially to assist small-scale businesses.

This supplementary support is consistent with the Council’s conclusions on Yemen in June 2018 and February 2019. It reiterates the EU’s commitment to support the UN-led efforts towards a sustainable and inclusive political solution to the on-going conflict. The aid is intended to protect the medium- to long-term prospects of Yemen’s citizens by supporting basic services and preventing the collapse of institutional and economic structures.

Mark Lowcock, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, addressed the Security Council of the United Nations 17 October about the humanitarian situation in Yemen, including severe water challenges in the strife-torn country.

He declared that Yemen is the world’s worst humanitarian crisis and the largest relief operation with more than 250 humanitarian agencies working through the UN response plan. A relief effort is reaching 12 million people each month.

With respect to the protection of civilians, a number of air strikes in September killed an average of 13 people each day and a UN-supported water system that serves 12,000 people. Lowcock emphasized that this was the fourth time the facility has been hit since 2016.