Asharq Al-awsat English https://aawsat.com/english Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper http://feedly.com/icon.svg

Source: UN Concerned Over Safety of WFP Staff in Houthi-Controlled Areas

Source: UN Concerned Over Safety of WFP Staff in Houthi-Controlled Areas

Wednesday, 19 June, 2019 - 05:30
A woman walks through a market in the old quarter of Sanaa, Yemen, 17 June 2019. EPA/YAHYA ARHAB
Riyadh - Abdulhadi Habtor
A UN official told Asharq Al-Awsat on Tuesday that following remarks made by head of the UN World Food Program David Beasley on the continuing dire humanitarian situation in Yemen, the organization remains very concerned on the safety of the WFP staff in Houthi-controlled areas.

“Following Beasley’s statement, we remain very concerned on the safety of the WFP staff. We issued some guidelines but concern over their lives remains high,” the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said.

There are more than 640 employees from several nationalities, including Yemenis, working under the WFP in Yemen.

On Monday, Beasley briefed the Security Council on the continuing dire humanitarian situation in Yemen, opening the files of Houthi corruption and placing question marks on the fate of millions of Yemenis in Houthi-controlled areas in case the Program suspends its operation next week.

“If we do not receive assurances (from Houthis) then we will begin a phased suspension of food assistance, most likely towards the end of the week,” Beasley had warned.

In case the Program suspends its activities in Houthi-controlled areas, around 10 million people are expected to suffer from the lack of food assistance.

Yemeni government spokesman Rajeh Badi told Asharq Al-Awsat on Tuesday: “Day after day, the world is discovering the nefariousness of the Iranian-backed Houthi militias.”

Beasley has said that food continues to be taken from the mouths of hungry little boys and little girls in many areas of Yemen controlled by Houthis.

He said the WFP has received “concerning information,” including that 33 percent of respondents in Saada, a Houthi-controlled region in the north, had not received food aid, and that a “hotline” had detected 33 instances of misappropriation of food.

Editor Picks

Multimedia