The United Nations says the humanitarian crisis in Yemen, already the worst in the world, will deteriorate in 2019, nearly four years after a military coalition led by Saudi Arabia invaded the impoverished country and began an intense campaign of airstrikes and ground attacks which are still ongoing.
“The country with the biggest problem in 2019 is going to be Yemen,” said Mark Lowcock, the head of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), in a press conference in the Swiss city of Geneva on Tuesday.
He went on to say that last year the world body was providing food assistance to three million Yemenis a month. The figure, however, rose to eight million per month this year and is expected to hit 12 million next year, Lowcock added.
Leading a coalition of its allies, including the United Arab Emirates and Sudan, Saudi Arabia invaded Yemen in March 2015 in an attempt to reinstall former President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, who had resigned amid popular discontent and fled to Riyadh.
The aggression initially consisted of a bombing campaign but was later coupled with a naval blockade and the deployment of ground forces to Yemen.