A Five-Month Life and Starvation Death of a Yemeni Infant - Another Failing of Humanity
Udai Faisal - five-months-old, died in Yemen on March 24, 2016. Sunken-eyed with a skeletal-body, he vomited yellow fluid from his nose and mouth and stopped breathing. Udai Faisal did not cry, there were no tears. He died of starvation - of severe acute malnutrition that drains withering fragile bodies of all symptoms of life. He weighed just five-pounds. He was born in war and he died a victim of a gross humanitarian failing that has taken hold of these modern times.
From Syria to Yemen to Sudan to South Sudan and elsewhere, there are conflicts and victims - including many innocent children, who are falling prey to the results of war. Yet, the stalwarts of freedoms and of the human spirit and of the rights of man, appear totally impotent to correct the humanitarian tragedies that are evolving every day. As a result of humanity's failure to end war and to end suffering, Udai Faisal has died.
Like many other Yemeni children, he has died and his body now decays in a wind-blown parched-dry rocky plot in the sands of Yemen. The Associated Press(AP) recalled Udai Faisal's short and hungry life earlier today in a story entitled: An infant's 5-month life points to hunger's spread in Yemen.
What is a stark and a cruel reality of Udai Faisal's brief experience on Planet Earth, is that although Yemen, with a population of 26 million and terribly impoverished before Saudi Arabia launched a coalition force to drive back the Houthis last March, has since witnessed the number of people considered "severely food insecure" - unable to put food on their tables without aid, almost doubled from 4.3 million to 7 million.
Also, according to a UNICEF report released yesterday and cited by the AP, the number of moderate malnourished children under age five in Yemen has increased from 690,000 to 1.3 million. Moreover, UNICEF estimates that the number of severely acute malnourished children has increased from 160,000 a-year-ago to 320,000 now. In addition, the World Food Program estimates that 10 of Yemen's 22 provinces are classified as one step away from famine.
UNICEF also reported yesterday that in Yemen, the number of children under 5-years-old dying from preventable diseases have increased by 10,000 over the pre-war numbers of 40,000 a year.
Some 9,000 victims have died in the war in Yemen of which 3,000 are civilians and 900 children. Of the children killed and the 1,300 wounded in the war, some 61 percent of the casualties came in air strikes.
Yet, Yemen's tragedy continues spreading woe to children, parents and civilians and underscoring yet another humanitarian failing of humankind in 2016.