World / Middle East

Over 1,000 killed in Yemen over past month: UN

(Xinhua) Updated: 2015-04-23 09:32

UNITED NATIONS - The United Nations said Wednesday that the death toll in the fighting in Yemen over the past month topped 1,000 and aid agencies continue to face access constraints in the country.

"The World Health Organization (WHO) reported that 1,080 people have been killed, and 4,352 injured between March 19 and April 20 in Yemen," UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said at a daily news briefing here.

"Due to insecurity today in Aden city and the spread of street fighting, one aid agency was unable to distribute household items to displaced people staying in schools," Dujarric said.

Another relief organization successfully delivered hygiene items to one of Aden's major public hospitals, he said. "Water trucking has started today for vulnerable people in Al Dhubayiat area of Al Dhale'e governorate, which has had no water and electricity for more than a month."

WHO also said that main hospitals face shutting down because of critical shortages of power, lack of fuel and oxygen.

Also on Wednesday, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon expressed his hope for an early end to the fighting in Yemen.

Meanwhile, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) in Yemen said there were 7.9 million children among the 15.9 million people, or some 60 percent of the total population, in need of humanitarian assistance in the war-torn country.

WHO noted that Yemen's disease surveillance reports show a doubling over the past month in the number of cases of bloody diarrhea in children under the age of five.

Meanwhile, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in its latest situation update that after the announcement of a halt in the month-long campaign of aerial strike, most people in the capital Sana'a are staying indoors and adopting a "wait-and-see" attitude.

In the city of Aden, the coalition's announcement has sparked violence; ground fighting involving tanks is taking place throughout the city and militants are entering residential areas.

According to the OCHA, Yemen's humanitarian crisis is fueled by conflict and widespread insecurity, large-scale displacement, civil strife, political instability, chronic food shortages, a breakdown of social services, endemic poverty and refugee influxes.

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