The World Bank will dedicate a portfolio of $400 million to launch an immediate aid campaign in war-stricken Yemen, a high-ranking Yemeni official told Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper.
Yemeni Minister of Planning and International Cooperation, Dr. Mohammed Al-Maitami, said on Tuesday that the campaign aims at providing food and medicine to besieged residents, noting that 80 percent of the Yemeni population was suffering from hunger.
Al-Maitami said the World Bank has adopted an unprecedented landmark document to urgently interfere in Yemen.
“We have reached a historic document with the World Bank following long negotiations and discussions between the ministry of planning and international cooperation and the World Bank experts’ delegation,” the Yemeni minister told Asharq Al-Awsat.
The document provides that the World Bank directly interferes with core development reforms in order to strengthen Yemen’s basic infrastructure needs.
“The success of this new strategy will have a positive impact on the rest of countries suffering from war and conflicts,” Al-Maitami said, adding that $400 million will be dedicated to urgent aid programs in Yemen.
According to U.N. agencies, between March 2015 and February 2016, the conflict in Yemen left over 7,600 people dead, including 3,000 civilians and another 6,000 injured. About half of Yemen’s population of about 26.8 million is in areas directly affected by the conflict. Severe food insecurity affects 7.6 million people, and an estimated 2 million are malnourished, including 1.3 million children, of whom 320,000 are suffering from severe acute malnutrition.
Al-Maitami said that his ministry also reached an agreement with the European Union to launch an urgent assistance program of $40 million, which will include four Yemeni governorates that are in dire need of urgent help.