Lack of funding undermining agencies' efforts to aid conflict-hit Yemenis: UN

14:44, May 28, 2010      

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United Nations humanitarian agencies and their partners are striving to continue providing assistance to more than 320,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) in conflict-affected areas of Yemen despite limited funding and access difficulties due to insecurity, a UN office reported Thursday.

Overall there are an estimated 342,000 people, including the IDPs, in need of relief in the five provinces or governorates hit by armed conflict in the country, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said.

In Sa'ada governorate alone -- the province worst affected by conflict -- there are an estimated 110,000 IDPs and many more people in need.

The capacity of the national authorities to provide humanitarian support has been overwhelmed by the sheer numbers and lack of resources. Access to Sa'ada governorate remains severely constrained due insecurity, but humanitarian agencies have managed to deliver some assistance to people in Sa'ada City and surrounding areas, as well to affected civilians in the Al-Mandaba area of Baqim district on the border with Saudi Arabia.

The UN World Food Program (WFP) and its partners are providing food assistance to more than 275,600 IDPs in the five conflict- affected governorates.

More than 207,300 IDPs have also received non-food items and emergency shelter material from other agencies, including the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM), since August last year.

Inadequate funding has continued to be the main hindrance to more effective aid delivery in Yemen. The humanitarian appeal launched at the end of November last year, which requested more than 177 million U.S. dollars, has so far received only 27 percent of the funds sought.

"The situation is dire and many agencies have started to cut their projects," OCHA said in an update. "Although humanitarian actors continue to try to gain access to all affected populations regardless of their locations, lack of funding and related limited response capacity is hampering those access negotiations," it added.

Source: Xinhua


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