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Video: Heatwave Compounds Misery During Ramadan in Yemen

English subtitles are available.

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.

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Yemen in Crisis: The Road to War

By Helen Lackner

The democratic promise of the 2011 Arab Spring has unraveled in Yemen, triggering a disastrous crisis of civil war, famine, militarization, and governmental collapse with serious implications for the future of the region. Yet as expert political researcher Helen Lackner argues, the catastrophe does not have to continue, and we can hope for and help build a different future in Yemen. 

Fueled by Arab and Western intervention, the civil war has quickly escalated, resulting in thousands killed and millions close to starvation. Suffering from a collapsed economy, the people of Yemen face a desperate choice between the Huthi rebels on the one side and the internationally recognized government propped up by the Saudi-led coalition and Western arms on the other. 

In this invaluable analysis, Helen Lackner uncovers the roots of the social and political conflicts that threaten the very survival of the state and its people. Importantly, she argues that we must understand the roots of the current crisis so that we can hope for a different future for Yemen and the Middle East. 

With a preface exploring the U.S.’s central role in the crisis.


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