An open letter, signed by thirty international agencies and charitable organisations, pleads for fulfilment of commitments for aid to Yemen.
The 15 June letter "rom "The Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) actors in Yemen" identifies that COVID-19 is spreading throughout Yemen, one of the most water scarce countries in the world. The group identifies that over five years of conflict have damaged water systems, leaving the health sector on the brink of collapse and have contributed to outbreaks of disease, including cholera. The group estimates that over 70 percent of the population lack access to soap for handwashing and personal hygiene and basic water supplies required to cope with COVID-19.
The letter addresses the funding crisis and the consequences of failing to meet funding demands. By the end of June, the group estimates that services to over 6 million people (including 3 million children) will have to be cut. If the funding shortfalls continue through July over 6.3 million people will be affected and services to curtail the spread of COVID-19, including the provision of water services, will cease.
The humanitarian agencies are facing an impossible prospect. Unless adequate funding is received within the next two weeks, they will be forced to close vital services to address the spread of COVID-19, cholera, malnutrition, and polio. Access to water services will cease.
The letter pleads with countries who have pledged support to meet their commitments.