SANA’A (Dispatches) – San’a-based Yemen government says it is ready to exchange all prisoners with the Saudi-backed militants and mercenaries, Al-Masirah TV reported the head of the Prisoner Affairs Committee as saying.
According to the channel, Abdul Qader Al-Murtada made the remarks during his meeting with the President of the International Committee of the Red Cross, Peter Maurer, in Sana’a.
“During our meeting with the ICRC President, we confirmed our full readiness to swap all prisoners,” al-Murtada said, adding that he had also explained in details to Maurer “the violations committed by the forces of aggression against the [Yemeni] prisoners,” in reference to the Saudi-led coalition and the mercenaries.
“I have asked him to make a serious move to visit all prisons, see the conditions of the prisoners, and reveal the fate of the disappeared,” he added.
‘Millions Threatened by Water, Food Shortages’
Meanwhile, the ICRC warned that millions are threatened by water, food shortages in Yemen.
More than half a decade of conflict has exhausted Yemenis and transformed the country into the world’s largest humanitarian crisis. Access to water, food and basic services is becoming harder for most Yemenis even as funding for humanitarian operations has fallen sharply.
In one of the most water-scarce countries in the world, Yemen’s water crisis affects millions of people a day. The nation’s network of water pipes reaches only 30% of the population and is damaged or in need of upgrading in many places. More than 15 million people resort to expensive and time-consuming ways to find enough water every day.
Millions of Yemenis often walk for miles to fetch water, exposing themselves to different risks, including the risk of assault.
In many areas, people are forced to use agricultural water for drinking, cooking and washing. Using water meant for agricultural purposes can generate serious health issues for the population.
A lack of access to potable water and little treatment of wastewater contributes to major health outbreaks, including cholera and acute watery diarrhea that started in October 2016 in a country where almost 20 million people lack access to basic health care.
The severity of acute food insecurity continues to worsen as the conflict prolongs. Most Yemenis survive on one meal per day and child malnutrition is increasing. The food security situation was aggravated by escalating conflict, the COVID-19 pandemic, flooding, a desert locust outbreak, economic collapse, and reduced humanitarian aid.
Although 24 million people out of a population of 30 million need some form of humanitarian assistance, funding for Yemen are decreasing drastically. Yemen’s latest international pledging conference earlier this year only reached 50% of the funding goal.