The sad story of Sana’a

Conflict continues to haunt Yemen’s capital

  • Ibrahim, 10, walks through the debris of a building destroyed by a previous airstrike in Sana’a.
    Yehia Arhab/EPA for ICRC
  • This wide pitch serves as a football field for these children who escaped the war and its destruction to find a way to continue playing their favourite sport.
    Yehia Arhab/EPA for ICRC
  • Hisham, 14, and Yazan, 8, study in a room inside their home. Like all Yemenis, they are affected by the insistent power cuts. Making do with the little light they get from their headlamp, they catch up on their studies. Today nearly 90% of Yemenis live with very little light in their homes.
    Yehia Arhab/EPA for ICRC
  • All that Mohammed still has are the ruins of his home which was destroyed during the ongoing conflict.
    Yehia Arhab/EPA for ICRC
  • This young Yemeni man chose the name “The Hope Cafeteria” for his shop which is located in a destroyed building in Sana’a.
    Yehia Arhab/EPA for ICRC
  • Ali, 13, stands in the middle of destroyed buildings in his neighbourhood.
    Yehia Arhab/EPA for ICRC
13 February 2018

Violent clashes. Ongoing airstrikes. Outbreaks of cholera and other preventable diseases. Dwindling care for kidney failure patients. Decimated health care system.

With over 20 million in need of aid, Yemen is the world's single largest humanitarian crisis. Time is running out for the people caught in the midst of the ongoing conflict.

But, not so long ago, the enchanting souks and narrow alleys of old Sana'a bustled with vendors and tourists. Three years into the brutal crisis in Yemen, almost every aspect of daily life has been affected.

From dealing with insistent power cuts on a daily basis to scraping for their livelihood in the middle of debris and destroyed buildings, the people of Sana'a are not giving up on hope.

The ICRC is working round the clock to bring help to these people in Yemen in every way possible. In 2017 alone, we helped over 3 million people access clean water and better sanitation – essentials in these troubled times. Around 879,000 displaced people received various forms of assistance.