UNICEF: 92% of babies in Yemen suffer from this at birth
Almost all babies in Yemen are born underweight, according to data on childhood nutrition released today by UNICEF. The figures of 92 per cent for children born in Yemen are a stark contrast to the worldwide figures of 29 per cent over the same period between 2010-2018.
According to the UN body, globally, one in three children under the age of five are undernourished or overweight.
“If children eat poorly, they live poorly,” said UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore, adding: “We are losing ground in the fight for healthy diets.”
Despite a significant drop in stunting in poor countries, 149 million children are today still too short for their age, a clinical condition that impairs both brain and body development.
For Yemen’s pre-schoolers the figures for stunting are especially severe, with 46 per cent affected based on data collected between 2013-2018, compared with 22 per cent globally over the same period.
In March 2015, the US -backed –Saudi-led coalition started a war against Yemen with the declared aim of crushing the Houthi Ansarullah movement, who had taken over from the staunch Riyadh ally and fugitive former president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, while also seeking to secure the Saudi border with its southern neighbor. Three years and over 600,000 dead and injured Yemeni people and prevented the patients from travelling abroad for treatment and blocked the entry of medicine into the war-torn country, the war has yielded little to that effect.
Despite the coalition claims that it is bombing the positions of the Ansarullah fighters, Saudi bombers are flattening residential areas and civilian infrastructures.
More than 2,200 others have died of cholera, and the crisis has triggered what the United Nations has described as the world’s worst humanitarian disaster.