YEMEN – (Open Doors UK) As the war in Yemen continues, leaving over 22 million Yemenis in need of humanitarian assistance and 8.4 million people on the brink of famine, according to the International Crisis Group, Christians are being excluded from receiving vital humanitarian aid.
Henriette Kats, an Open Doors researcher, says, “Contacts in the country have repeatedly stated that where citizens are known to be Christians, they are regularly being excluded from receiving humanitarian aid.”
Henriette says, “There is a Christian perspective to the fighting in Yemen, which has left no useable church buildings in the country. All four registered churches were located in Aden and suffered serious war-damage in 2015 and 2016 from both Islamic militant groups and Saudi airstrikes. Opinions differ over whether the damage to the churches was ‘collateral damage’, whether it could have been prevented, or whether the armed units involved simply used the situation to destroy the churches.
“What is definite is that most foreign Christians have left the country due to the civil war, leaving the indigenous Christians to stand on their own feet. They may have no church buildings, but since this indigenous church – which consists mainly of Christians with a Muslim background – has evolved and matured over the years, they are still there. And they have a right to just as much food and medicine as everyone else.”