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Floods Strike 20 Refugee Camps in Yemen, Saudi Arabia Comes to Aid

Floods Strike 20 Refugee Camps in Yemen, Saudi Arabia Comes to Aid

Saturday, 6 June, 2020 - 08:00
The Saudi Development and Reconstruction Program for Yemen reopens roads after flooding in Aden. (SPA)

Twenty refugee camps in southern and eastern Yemen have been struck by flooding from heavy seasonal rain.


The refugees, who have escaped the oppression of the Iran-backed Houthi militias, now have to confront a new challenge amid calls by the government on relief agencies for urgent aid.


The flooding has also compounded concerns over the spread of diseases among the refugees as the country is already grappling with the novel coronavirus outbreak.


Eleven camps in Aden, four in Hadramawt and five in other provinces have been damaged, a local official told Asharq Al-Awsat. Dozens of families have been affected and forced to flee to areas that have not been impacted by the flooding. Many have turned to al-Mahra province where 1,570 families are already present, he added.


The greatest need now is for tents and food, he said. The greatest challenge is meeting health and sanitation needs in order to avoid the environmental catastrophe that took place in Aden earlier this year during similar flooding, which led to diseases that left hundreds dead.


The Saudi Development and Reconstruction Program for Yemen has already kicked off its relief efforts in affected areas in Aden, removing debris and flood water.


The program is also seeking to restore electricity that was cut by the flooding and reopen roads. It will also pump out flood water from refugee camps and spray disinfectants when the rain eases.


It said that 17,940 people have benefitted directly and 20,173 have benefitted indirectly from its efforts, which are being carried out by 30 workers, 15 administrative officials, 60 partners from relief agencies and 78 civilian volunteers.


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