"Catastrophic" humanitarian consequences in Yemen

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The World Health Organization (WHO) delivering water to internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Al-Dhalea governorate, Yemen. WHO Yemen File Photo

The humanitarian consequences of the conflict in Yemen have been described as "catastrophic" by a top UN official.

Johannes Van Der Klaauw, who is the Humanitarian Coordinator for the Middle Eastern country, said the conflict has devastated the city of Aden and destroyed the lives and livelihoods of the majority of Yemenis.

An estimated 23,000 people have died or suffered injuries since late March, when fighting began between a Saudi-led coalition and Houthi rebels.

Stephanie Coutrix reports.

Civilians are paying the heaviest price in Yemen, the UN Humanitarian Coordinator for the country said on Monday.

Johannes Van Der Klaauw described hearing numerous accounts of death, hunger and utter desperation as mothers and fathers struggle to find safety, security and care for their loved ones.

He called the high number of civilians who have been killed or injured a "shocking testament" to the suffering faced by the civilian population.

Mr Van Der Klaauw added that the humanitarian community's ability to reach those in need will only be possible if parties to the conflict provide rapid, safe and unimpeded humanitarian access.

Meanwhile, the UN Secretary-General welcomed the announcement by the Saudi-led Coalition of a unilateral five-day, renewable humanitarian pause, scheduled to start at midnight on Monday.

Ban Ki-moon urged the Houthis and all other parties to maintain this break in fighting for the sake of all the Yemeni people.

Stephanie Coutrix, United Nations.

Duration: 1'02"

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