With temperatures above 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit) and the Muslim holy month of Ramadan entering its fourth week, the sale of ice has seen a boom in the recent months, as shown in footage filmed in the Ku’aydinah District of Hajjah governorate on Tuesday.
One local Yahya Ali Soltan said: “Our demands increase during Ramadan. Among these demands is ice due to the increase in temperature in our area which has a difficult road.”
The situation has become dire since the war, which started in 2015, led to a complete breakdown of public services with some areas left without electricity for up to 15 hours a day and destruction of local ice factories resulting in often long and treacherous rides through remote areas by vendors.
“We sell the ice due to harsh living conditions. We go to buy ice from remote areas then we come back here to Ku’aydinah, which is a mountainous region and difficult to access,” said one of the vendors, Gaber Shoaie Omr.
Concerns are also being raised about the quality of water used for ice, with Yemen currently seeing an outbreak of cholera.
Yemen is facing one of the largest humanitarian crises in the world. With the conflict in its fifth year, widespread instability, severe economic decline, food insecurity and the collapse of essential public services continue to take an enormous toll on the people of Yemen.