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20 Nov 2020 | 10:36 AM UTC

Gunmen attack humanitarian workers in Tai’zz province November 17

Unidentified gunmen attack humanitarian workers in Tai’zz province on November 17; highlights threat of operating in the region

security
YEM

Event

Unidentified gunmen attacked aid workers from the Emirates Red Crescent (ERC) in Tai'zz province on Tuesday, November 17. The attack reportedly targeted ERC medical staff who were working at a mobile healthcare clinic in the Yakhtil area of Al Mukha district. Bullets penetrated the aid workers' vehicle but no casualties were reported. The ERC and the Abu Dhabi foreign ministry has condemned the attack.

Further attacks targeting humanitarian workers are possible in the region over the medium term amid the ongoing complex conflict in Yemen.

Context

Yemen is engaged in a complex and deadly conflict, ongoing since Houthi rebels entered a civil war with the Yemeni government, supported by a Saudi-led coalition, in 2015. During this period, it has become one of the most dangerous and non-permissive operating environments in the world for humanitarian staff, who face the threat of detention and harassment whilst trying to provide aid to millions of people requiring assistance. The UN estimates that nearly 80 percent of the 24 million population require some form of humanitarian assistance and protection. By mid-November only USD 1.58 billion of the USD 3.2 billion worth of aid needed in Yemen in 2020 had been received.

Advice

Due to poor security conditions, many Western governments advise their citizens against all travel to Yemen. Travel to the country should only be considered with proper security protocols in place. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel.

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