US to provide $131 mln in emergency food aid to Yemen

Most of new funding will provide food assistance through UN World Food Program, says State Department

US to provide $131 mln in emergency food aid to Yemen

The United States is providing nearly $131 million in additional emergency food assistance to the people of Yemen

"This brings the total U.S. humanitarian assistance for the Yemen response to more than $697 million since the beginning of Fiscal Year 2018," the State Department said Thursday in a statement.  

It said most of the new funding would provide food assistance through the UN World Food Program. 

Yemen has been wracked by violence since 2014, when the Houthi rebel group overran much of the country and the crisis escalated in 2015 when a Saudi-led coalition launched a devastating air campaign aimed at rolling back Houthi gains.

Tens of thousands of people, including civilians, are believed to have been killed and the UN estimates that around 14 million Yemenis are at risk of famine.

In order to deliver this assistance, relief supplies and aid workers "must be able to move freely" throughout the war-torn country, the statement said.  

"All parties must cease hostilities and support negotiations to find a peaceful solution and put an end to the suffering of millions," it added.