Aswat Asharq Al-Awsat :

Aswat Asharq Al-Awsat : Yemen: Limited Resumption of Aid Distribution in Houthi-Controlled Areas

Children wait for lunch at their hut in Sanaa, Yemen August 29, 2022 (Reuters)
Children wait for lunch at their hut in Sanaa, Yemen August 29, 2022 (Reuters)
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Yemen: Limited Resumption of Aid Distribution in Houthi-Controlled Areas

Children wait for lunch at their hut in Sanaa, Yemen August 29, 2022 (Reuters)
Children wait for lunch at their hut in Sanaa, Yemen August 29, 2022 (Reuters)

The World Food Program (WFP) announced on Tuesday the limited resumption of aid distribution in Houthi-controlled areas, after a six-month pause of assistance due to a dispute with the group over beneficiary lists.

The United Nations agency revealed that this resumption has led to a decrease in poor food consumption among families who received food rations by more than half.

WFP said it conducted a one-off food distribution in eight districts in Hajjah and Hodeidah during May to assess the impact of this one-off distribution. It interviewed a panel sample of 219 households during the pause, and after receiving the food assistance.

In these eight districts, the share of assisted households suffering from severe food deprivation (poor food consumption) dropped from 41% in February, to 22% in May 2024 immediately after the one-off food distribution.

Conversely, the UN agency said that poor food consumption soared in the rest of the non-assisted districts of Hajjah and Hodeidah, as 49% of the households reported severe food deprivation during the same period.

Additionally, the prevalence of severe levels of hunger in the assisted districts decreased from 12% in February to 4% in May.

The reliance on severe food-based coping strategies also decreased from 62% to 58% respectively.

In December 2023, WFP announced a pause in General Food Assistance (GFA), affecting approximately 9.5 million beneficiaries in northern Yemen, primarily due to funding challenges and following unsuccessful negotiations with Houthis on depriving more than one million beneficiaries and directing aid to people who need it most.

Severe Food Deprivation

A subsequent longitudinal study published by WFP in March 2024, revealed that the GFA pause resulted in increased levels of severe food deprivation among beneficiary households.

The impact was uneven across governorates in the north, some governorates demonstrated very high sensitivity to the assistance pause, including Hajjah and Hodeidah governorates.
The eight districts were selected based on vulnerability analysis and other operational factors. Due to limited food stocks and resource constraints, the UN agency said the GFA food basket included only 50 KG of wheat flour and 5 kg of pulses per assisted household, providing 984 calories per person per day for 30 feeding days.

It then showed that post-distribution monitoring (PDM) was conducted remotely two weeks after the distribution, using a panel sample of 219 households selected from the eight districts.

The PDM results indicate a significant reduction in the prevalence of food insecurity amongst beneficiary households in the eight districts, immediately after receiving assistance in May.

WFP said the proportion of households unable to access adequate food decreased from 76% in February to 58% in May.

Also, consumption of essential nutrients improved amongst the surveyed households in May.

The percentage of households consuming protein in the previous seven days increased from 68% in February to 88% in May, and those consuming pulses also increased from 38% to 76% for the same period.

Overall, WFP said the proportion of households employing severe food-based coping strategies decreased from 62% in February to 58% in May 2024 in the eight governorates.

Additionally, the reliance on severe livelihood-based coping strategies (crisis or emergency levels), also decreased from 82% in February to 77% in May.

Finally, the share of households experiencing severe hunger, as measured by household hunger scale, decreased from 12% in February to 4% in May, after receiving the food rations, according to the Program.



Aswat Asharq Al-Awsat : Israel Orders Evacuation of Part of Gaza's Khan Younis after Renewed Rocket Fire

Palestinians walk on the rubble of buildings destroyed in previous Israeli bombardment, between two pools of stagnant water in Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip on July 19, 2024, as the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian group Hamas continues. (Photo by Bashar TALEB / AFP)
Palestinians walk on the rubble of buildings destroyed in previous Israeli bombardment, between two pools of stagnant water in Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip on July 19, 2024, as the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian group Hamas continues. (Photo by Bashar TALEB / AFP)
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Israel Orders Evacuation of Part of Gaza's Khan Younis after Renewed Rocket Fire

Palestinians walk on the rubble of buildings destroyed in previous Israeli bombardment, between two pools of stagnant water in Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip on July 19, 2024, as the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian group Hamas continues. (Photo by Bashar TALEB / AFP)
Palestinians walk on the rubble of buildings destroyed in previous Israeli bombardment, between two pools of stagnant water in Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip on July 19, 2024, as the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian group Hamas continues. (Photo by Bashar TALEB / AFP)

The Israeli military on Monday called on Gazans to clear out of the eastern parts of the city Khan Younis, saying it was preparing to "forcefully operate" against renewed rocket fire and militant activity from the area, which it had designated as a humanitarian zone.
To allow this, the military said it was adjusting the borders of a humanitarian zone in order to keep the civilian population away from areas of combat.
On Sunday, Israeli airstrikes killed at least 15 people, including women and children overnight in Gaza, according to hospital officials and a body count by an Associated Press journalist.
The latest strikes occurred as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu prepared to leave Monday for the United States, where he is expected to meet with President Joe Biden and address Congress to make his case for the nine-month war against Hamas while cease-fire negotiations continue. A team will be sent to continue talks on Thursday, Netanyahu's office said.
The already precarious humanitarian conditions inside besieged Gaza have worsened with the discovery of the polio virus as water and sanitation services have suffered for the territory’s population of 2.3 million, most of it displaced.
The war in Gaza has killed more than 38,900 people, according to the territory’s Health Ministry, which doesn’t distinguish between combatants and civilians in its count. The war began with an assault by Hamas militants on southern Israel on Oct. 7 that killed 1,200 people, most of them civilians, and took about 250 hostages. About 120 remain held, about a third of them believed to be dead, according to Israeli authorities.