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One Child Dies Every 10 Minutes In Yemen As US-Backed War Continues

The U.S.-backed, Saudi-led war on Yemen has devastated the civilian population, and poverty, disease, and starvation are taking a heavy toll on the country’s children.

The Yemeni struggled for years with poverty and a lack of quality health care even before the war began, but the conflict has driven the nation to the verge of total collapse and pushed child mortality rates way up

“Now, the situation is much worse and an estimated 1,000 children are dying every week from preventable killers like diarrhoea, malnutrition and respiratory tract infections,” said Edward Santiago, Yemen director for the NGO Save the Children.

At least 1,219 children have died as a direct result of the war in Yemen, but a desperate lack of medical supplies, bombed-out hospitals, and missing or dead medical staff are likely to cause an additional 10,000 preventable deaths each year, according to “Struggling to Survive: Stories from Yemen’s collapsing health system,” a briefing published on Dec. 19 by Save the Children International.

War in Yemen erupted in March of 2015, shortly after Houthi  rebels took over the government. In retaliation, a coalition led by Saudi Arabia, and supported by the U.S. government, began a vicious bombing campaign that deliberately targeted civilian infrastructure from hospitals to sources of fresh water.

According to a Dec. 6 report from the BBC which uses United Nations data, 50 percent of hospitals and other medical facilities have been rendered inoperable by the war. There’s also a critical shortage of medical staff and medicine, and impoverished families struggle to afford life-saving care even when it’s available.

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