In shadow of war, a silent killer is claiming Yemen’s children
Aid organisations fear cholera will affect a million people by the year-end, most of them children
Written by Sameer Arshad Khatlani | New Delhi | Updated: December 8, 2017 4:44 pm
Houthi Shiite rebels walk amid the rubble of the Republican Palace that was destroyed by Saudi-led airstrikes, in Sanaa, Yemen, on Wednesday. (Source: AP/PTI)
When the civil war in Yemen between President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi’s loyalists and Houthi rebels started in 2015, the Arab world’s poorest countries imported 90 per cent of its needs. The imports included fuel needed to operate pumps to draw and supply potable water in the arid southern Arabian Peninsula country. As the conflict escalated and Hadi’s backers, the Saudi Arabia-led coalition, enforced an embargo to bring the Houthis to their knees, the imports dried up and left most of the pumps dysfunctional. The situation forced tens of thousands of people to drink whatever water was available, accentuating the worst by-product of the least talked about conflict: cholera. The epidemic is the worst in recent history with a million cases feared by the year end. Most of them — 6,00,000 — are likely to be children.
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