World Bulletin / News Desk
Nearly half of Yemenis go to bed hungry every night as political instability compounds a global food and fuel price surge, giving the Arabian Peninsula state the world's third-highest rate of child malnutrition, the World Food Programme said on Sunday.
Yemen has been in turmoil since last year's revolt against 33 years of rule by Ali Abdullah Saleh when already weak state control in outlying regions broke down as the army split into pro- and anti-Saleh factions and some groups occupied some areas.
Forced to import most of its food needs because of a paucity of arable land, Yemen has also suffered from a rise in global food and fuel prices, WFP spokesman Barry Came told Reuters.
"Five million people, or 22 percent of the population, can't feed themselves or buy enough to feed themselves ... These are mostly landless labourers, so they don't grow their own food, and with high food prices they can't buy it either," said Came.
"In addition, there is another five million who are being really hard hit by high food prices and on the edge of being food insecure. So 10 million people in this country go to bed hungry every night."
The number of people receiving daily WFP food rations has risen from 1.2 million in January to over 3.8 million, but poor infrastructure and fear of kidnappings by tribes have complicated the logistics of providing food aid.
Thirteen percent of Yemeni children were now acutely malnourished as a result of the political and economic strains of the past year, giving Yemen the third-highest rate of child malnutrition in the world, he said.
International donors pledged $1.46 billion in aid to the country of 24 million at a meeting in New York on Thursday attended by President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who said the pledge would help Yemen avoid a civil war.
Donors had already promised $6.4 billion but will expect more action on political and security reform in return.
Presidential council has asked the Tobruk-based parliament to grant it an extra week to form unity govt under UN deal
'As we have seen in the tumult across the Middle East and North Africa, when governments do not lift up their citizens, it's a recipe for instability and strife,' US president says
'The passengers were intended for another airline, Turkish Airlines,' Daallo Airlines CEO says
Premier David Cameron's office fears that 'thousands of people' could be crossing into UK if the country leaves EU
According to an army source, Iraq is deploying thousands of troops hoping to retake the key northern city
'The idea is to send a message to migrants that there is a double fence so give up crossing illegally,' a senior army official says
A group of seven suspects have planned to stage attacks in the Russian capital, Saint Petersburg and the Sverdlovsk region, Russian FSB security service claims
A picture of Malcolm X with his travel companion and teacher of Islam - Shaykh Ahmed Hassoun
Riyadh has announced discussions between Saudi and Venezuelan oil minister over ways to boost oil prices
Fighting breaks out between Rwandan rebels and a local Mai Mai militia
Vienna is considering deploying troops and police to the Balkans to reduce the flow of refugees on the route between Turkey and Austria
The country's PM Trudeau is set to pull out Canada's six F18s from bombing Syria
The legislation giving the government control over Poland's public broadcasters and top court prompted a series of demonstrations and harsh criticisms both at home and across Europe
Thousands have protested in Sarajevo against a ban on wearing the hijab in courts and other legal institutions
Hamas in a short Twitter statement that Mahmoud Eshtewi, a local member of the group’s military wing, was killed after he confessed to spying for Israel.