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UN approves plan to fight hunger in Yemen

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The UN World Food Programme (WFP) said today it's approved a two-year plan to fight hunger and build self-sufficiency in Yemen. The relief to recovery operation is estimated to cost US $491 million dollars.

The WFP mission will feed 6 million Yemenis with Food-For-Work projects, rations for families, nutritional support to infants, and school feeding with take-home rations for students. The foundation for a national school lunch program may very well take shape under this plan.

WFP country director Bishow Parajuli, speaking in Rome to the Executive Board, said, "Our actions will buy hope for millions of Yemenis, meeting the food needs of the most vulnerable today, while building resilience to secure the needs of tomorrow. We aim to provide a solid foundation for others to build on.”

The Yemeni Minister for Planning and International Cooperation, Mohammed Saeed al-Sa’adi, added, "WFP has been a solid and dependable partner to the Government of Yemen. We welcome this new operation, which can help improve the lives of millions of Yemenis.”

The key will be finding enough donations to carry out the operation. WFP relies entirely on voluntary funding from governments and the public. What will make finding donors even more difficult is the ongoing Middle East emergency from the war in Syria. WFP, this year alone, requires US $ 2 billion to feed Syrian war victims.

Yemen has suffered from its own conflict and instability in recent years. Defeating hunger is essential for peace and development. WFP is urging the international community to help. Parajuli stated, “We need to seize on this moment as an opportunity.”

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