Country - Yemen
Yemen Country Information
Yemen is a republic nation located at the lower most tip of the Arabian Peninsula in the western part of Asian continent. Yemen is bordered by Saudi Arabia in the north and Oman in the north east. The eastern and western borders are the coastlines with the Arabian Sea and the Red Sea respectively. The southern tip has a narrow coastline with the confluence of the Gulf of Aden, Guardafui Channel and the Red Sea. Yemen’s territory extends to about 200 surrounding islands, of which Socotra is the biggest.
Sana’a is the constitutionally declared capital of Yemen, though the city has been under siege of the rebellious group called Houthi since 2015. The city of Aden has come to be used as the current capital following the political bedlam. The civil war began in 2015 between the current Yemen Government and the mutinous group of Houthi. Between 2015 and 2017, more than 13500 people were reported killed in the political strife. In addition, the devastating famine took the heavy toll of over 50,000 people in Yemen. The scantiness for food persisted in 2018 too which was described by the United Nations as having reached the worst levels of starvation of the century.
The total population of Yemen as per the estimate of 2011 was more than 2.5 crores and the average density of population was 44 people per square kilometer. The per capita GDP (nominal) was US $ 1340. The unemployment rate was 35% and the country was rated by the United Nations as one of the poorest nations in the Middle East countries.
Yemen exported goods in 2014 worth US$ 8.291 billion with major components crude oil, coffee, dried and salted fish and liquefied natural gas. The imports exceeded the exports by US $1.899 billion and the main of imports comprised food and live animals, machinery and equipment and chemicals. The chronic political crisis has further ruined the economy. The devastation resulted in displacement of more than 2 million people and over 19 million are in acute shortage of food. Due to lack of medicines and malnutrition, as a consequence of blockade of airports, child mortality hiked to inestimable levels.
Great Mosque in Zabid, Cairo Castle in Taiz, Tawila Tanks Crater and Sira fortress are some of the important historic sites in Yemen. The Great Mosque in Sana’a and the Alban Mosque in Aden are the notable religious places in the country. Socotra island of Yemen is home to Ayhaft Canyon National Park, Skand Peak, Wadi Dirhur Canyon, Dihamri Marine protected area and Homhil protected area which are some exotic places of Yemen.
Taking into account the more serious aspect of the ongoing acute paucity of food and medicines, over 17 millions of people in Yemen have fallen prey to large scale outbreak of cholera and destruction of infrastructure. Accumulation of garbage everywhere has been aggravating the rotting unhygienic conditions making way for new diseases on large scale. As the timely reach of medicines and food has been hindered by the blockade at airports and points of international entry into Yemen, thousands of patients including children and women have been dying whose death could have been averted. Non-availability or insufficiency of water, food and medicines for years has forced millions of people to flee their homes.
International military support to the warring factions has only worsened the chaos. Unless the general public receives aid in the form of food, medicines from wealthy nations and international agencies restoration of peace in Yemen cannot be foreseen in the near future.