The top United Nations development official has called on the international community to provide urgently needed resources to respond to the humanitarian needs stemming from the conflict in northern Yemen and to enable early recovery to begin now that a ceasefire has been announced.
Helen Clark, Administrator of the UN Development Programme (UNDP), voiced her concern about the humanitarian situation in the affected region, where some 250,000 civilians have been uprooted since clashes between Government forces and Al Houthi rebels erupted in 2004.
The country is one of the poorest in its region and also faces a periodic influx of refugees from across the seas in the Horn of Africa.
Last December the UN and its partners, along with the Government, appealed for more than $177 million as part of the Yemen Humanitarian Response Plan, to provide life-saving assistance to some 1.6 million people affected by the conflict as well as acute poverty, to bolster livelihoods and to contribute to the stability of the country throughout 2010.
The ceasefire, welcomed by both Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), came into effect on 11 February and is holding so far.