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THE INTERVIEW

An interview with a French or international personality from the world of economics, politics, culture or diplomacy. Every Wednesday at 4.45 pm Paris time and Saturday at 7.45 am.

UN: 'The humanitarian crisis in Yemen is the world's worst'

Latest update : 2018-03-21

By Marc PERELMAN

In an interview with FRANCE 24, Mark Lowcock, the UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, expressed his concern about the situation in Yemen, a country ravaged by war, famine and cholera. "There are eight and half million people right on the brink of starvation", he said. Lowcock underlined, however, that the blockade of key ports by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates had been lifted, a move he welcomed.

Mark Lowcock, the top UN humanitarian official, also expressed deep concern about the situation in Syria. He urged all warring parties to stop the fighting and adhere to the nationwide ceasefire demanded in UN Security Council Resolution 2401. He lamented in particular the "heart-rending scenes" in Eastern Ghouta near Damascus, adding that "at least 50,000 people are on the move" fleeing the regime-led offensive against the rebel-held area.

Finally, Lowcock warned of a burgeoning humanitarian crisis in DR Congo and explained that due to a combination of a political and an economic crisis, "13 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance, twice the number of last year". He urged the international community to raise funds during the first-ever humanitarian donor conference on DR Congo, which is due to be held next month in Geneva.