The war in Yemen has been raging for more than six years. This devastating humanitarian crisis is a direct result of the ongoing war, and the humanitarian situation continues to deteriorate with civilians bearing the brunt of the violence.
In Yemen, three civilians are killed every day due to the conflict and 80% of the population is in need of humanitarian assistance or protection. Gender-based violence has dramatically increased, and hungry families are resorting to desperate measures to feed themselves – including marrying off their young daughters.
COVID-19 poses an imminent danger to Yemen's population already suffering from a shattered health care system. War and deliberate attacks on clinics and hospitals have left only 50% of health centers functioning, and the few facilities remaining open experience serious shortages of equipment, medicines and staff. Yemen is unable to cope with outbreaks and the COVID-19 pandemic is only straining the health care system further.
The recent call by the United Nations (UN) for a ceasefire is a critical step in bringing peace to Yemen and allowing humanitarian organizations like Oxfam to respond to the world's worst humanitarian crisis and to stop the spread of the deadly COVID-19 virus.
Canada endorsed the UN global ceasefire and has been a leader in providing lifesaving humanitarian assistance to Yemen – but it is doing so while simultaneously arming one of the parties to the conflict: Saudi Arabia. It is time for the Government of Canada to cancel its arms deal with Saudi Arabia. Only an immediate end to the violence by all parties to the conflict will bring peace. Let's unite our voices.
Sign the petition today and urge the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Marc Garneau, to end the arms deal with Saudi Arabia immediately. Yemen can't wait.