Amidst the dust and rubble of his modest home in Taez, father to six Fadel al-Sbei prepares a chicken for slaughter. The animal will be one among many animals that locals have sacrificed during Eid Al Adha celebrations this year; an event that is traditionally celebrated by giving up something significant like money or food as tribute. As a dispatch rider who only earns two dollars a day, there isn’t much meat on hand at all times so he has had no choice but to send out some chickens today while still having enough left over for himself.
In Yemen, a grinding war has plunged the population into what the UN has labeled “the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.” The poverty-stricken are often left hungry and without assistance. For example, many people in Taez have been forced to leave animal markets empty-handed this year because of skyrocketing prices. Meanwhile, civilians continue living under constant fear that airstrikes will once again devastate their lives as they did on September 27th when Saudi jets bombed an area near vital civilian infrastructure killing at least 26 Yemeni children aged 6 or younger (CNN).
In Yemen, a country where the war has plunged it into its worst humanitarian crisis in decades and left many impoverished. The prices of goods are skyrocketing as people struggle to survive their day-to-day lives.
In the war-torn country of Yemen, many people live in extreme poverty and can’t afford meat.
In just one city that is under government control (Taez), prices for animals have skyrocketed since 2015 when Houthi rebels began seizing cities throughout northern Yemen.
“The situation is so bad,” Fadel told AFP. “I went to the market today and I couldn’t buy anything! The sheep were all priced at $150-$200, but that’s too expensive for me-all I could afford was a chicken which cost just 20 bucks!”
“I went to the market and I couldn’t buy anything!” Fadel told AFP. “For the day of Eid, all they had was chicken! Anything else is too expensive these days.”
“I couldn’t buy any clothes, they’re too expensive.”
– “Life is very difficult,” he said.
“The Yemeni riyal hit its lowest level in more than seven years of conflict against the dollar this month in areas under government control.” – one U.S Dollar buys 1,000 Rials now on black market exchange rates
“I’m so glad I don’t live in an area where the currency is that devalued,” she said. “The only way to buy clothes and other necessities becomes a luxury.”
“We’re in a pitiful state.”
Millions are on the brink of famine, and tens of thousands have already succumbed to conditions that resemble famine. For two years running now, food prices in Yemen have skyrocketed 200%, with 80% relying solely on international aid for sustenance.
The rebels, supported by Iran’s arch-rival Riyadh, now control a major part of Yemen’s north. The conflict has claimed tens of thousands of lives and displaced millions according to humanitarian organizations. Yemeni economist Salem al-Maqtari warns that the country may be experiencing more dire consequences if their currency continues its freefall – which will affect all citizens in some way or another.
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