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UN seeks $2.96bn humanitarian aid for Yemen

IANS | Geneva |

The UN on Tuesday said $2.96 billion was needed to provide humanitarian aid for around 13.1 million Yemenis, whose country has been destroyed by a civil war.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres gave an opening speech at a donor conference in which the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Saudi Arabia, both members of the international coalition involved in the conflict, were participating, Efe news reported.

Guterres said Saudi Arabia and UAE had donated $930 million for Yemen’s humanitarian plan.

Since the beginning of Yemen’s conflict in September 2014, more than 22 million people, three-quarters of the population, have been in dire need of humanitarian aid, placing Yemen in a catastrophic situation.

The Yemen conflict was unleashed when the Iran-backed Houthi rebels seized the capital Sanaa.

The war was further complicated on March 26, 2015 when an Arab Sunni bloc led by Saudi Arabia began a military intervention.

Since the start of the offensive, over 10,000 people have died in areas controlled by the rebels, according to data published in January by the government of the Shia Houthis, although the figure were not confirmed.