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United States Announces Emergency Food Assistance for Yemen
November 30, 2018

Media Note
Office of the Spokesperson

Washington, DC
November 29, 2018

This week, Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo announced the United States is providing nearly $131 million in additional emergency food assistance to the people of Yemen, who are suffering from the world’s largest humanitarian crisis and food-security emergency. This brings the total U.S. humanitarian assistance for the Yemen response to more than $697 million since the beginning of Fiscal Year 2018.

More than half of Yemen’s population needs emergency food assistance. Without current, large-scale international humanitarian efforts, the Famine Early Warning Systems Network projects the food security situation would be significantly worse for millions, including potential famine. Most of the new funding will provide life-saving food assistance through the UN World Food Program to reach nearly 9.5 million of the most vulnerable Yemenis.

During a food crisis, preventable disease is a leading cause of death. The State Department and USAID are working with partners to provide more Yemenis with life-saving assistance and ensure that food, safe drinking water, nutrition assistance, sanitation and hygiene services, and medical care are reaching individuals and areas at the highest risk of famine. State and USAID are also scaling up development and early recovery assistance to help address the underlying causes of the crisis and strengthen the ability of institutions to meet the needs of all Yemenis.

To deliver this critical assistance, relief supplies and aid workers must be able to move freely throughout the country. In addition, humanitarian and commercial imports–particularly fuel, food, and medicine–must be permitted to flow freely into all of Yemen’s points of entry without impediments or delay.

The United States is one of the largest donors of humanitarian assistance to the Yemen response, and remains committed to helping the people of Yemen. We welcome the recent contributions provided by other donors, and urge all donors to increase their level of support to respond to the rapidly growing needs.

Ultimately, no amount of humanitarian or development assistance will end this conflict. All parties must cease hostilities and support negotiations to find a peaceful solution and put an end to the suffering of millions. It is time to end this conflict, replace conflict with compromise, and allow the Yemeni people to heal through peace and reconstruction.