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Yemen remains the world’s worst humanitarian crisis. The cumulative impact of more than five years of conflict, economic decline and institutional collapse has left 24 million people – about 80 per cent of the population – in need of humanitarian aid and protection. Millions of Yemenis who depend on aid for survival are now hanging by a thread as humanitarian agencies, including UNFPA, run out of money to fund lifesaving assistance, while humanitarian needs continue to grow.

More than $3.2 billion is required for the Yemen humanitarian response in 2020. At the High-Level Pledging Event in Riyadh held on 2 June, donors pledged only US$1.35 billion of the $2.41 billion needed to cover essential humanitarian activities between June and December, leaving a gap of more than $1 billion. With only $558 million provided so far, the aid operation is on the brink of collapse. The situation compares unfavourably with this stage in 2019, when $2.6 billion had been received for the aid operation. Without funding, the aid operation is expected to shrink further in August; 19 million people will lose access to healthcare, including pregnant women and children.

UNFPA’s appeal for $100.5 million in 2020 has received only 52 per cent thus far; forcing UNFPA to suspend 80 per cent of its reproductive health programme in May. The UNFPA-led Rapid Response Mechanism will stop by August if more funding does not become available in the coming weeks. UNFPA requires $68.4 million for the humanitarian and COVID-19 response up to the end of the year.

COVID-19 continued to spread rapidly and with deadlier consequences in Yemen. Between 10 April, when the first COVID-19 case was reported, and 30 June, the authorities announced 1,132 cases, 305 deaths, and 432 recoveries. About 25 per cent of Yemenis confirmed to have the disease have died, 5 times the global average. UNFPA is a frontline partner to the COVID-19 response ensuring the protection of health workers and women and girls accessing reproductive health services.

Despite limited funding, UNFPA's reached over a  million women with lifesaving reproductive health and protection services within the last six months.