1. Background
  2. Middle East & Iran

Yemen: The Worst Humanitarian Crisis on Earth

September 18, 2020

We've put together this fact sheet on the humanitarian crisis in Yemen. The United States must resume aid to this war-torn and famine-stricken nation.

Hunger and Disease

Download the Fact Sheet

  1. Yemen Fact Sheet (pdf, 183 KB)


“With COVID-19 now spreading rapidly, Yemen is facing an emergency within an emergency.” - UNICEF

  • Millions of Yemenis have compromised immune systems
  • Nearly 30% of Yemenis who have contracted COVID-19 have died - by far the highest fatality rate in the world
  • Projections cited by the UN estimate that COVID-19 could infect nearly 16 million Yemenis


  • The Saudi-led coalition’s bombing campaign has killed more than 18,500 civilians
  • About 50% of health facilities have been destroyed or closed due to the war
  • The coalition’s de facto blockade prevents food, fuel, and medicine from reaching north Yemen

Major Funding Shortfall

“Families all across Yemen depend on the generosity of the American people to survive. Now they are being punished and now they will die.” - Yemeni aid worker to The Washington Post

  • 31 of 41 major UN aid programs were forced to shut down or scale back operations this year
  • The WFP has cut food aid by nearly 50%, meaning millions will go with half-rations
  • $73 million of appropriated USAID funding has been suspended
  • 70% of the Yemeni population lives in areas subject to US aid restrictions