"The conflict in Yemen broke out in 2014 when rebels known as the Houthis seized the capital and sent the government into exile. The Houthis are allied with army units loyal to a former president, Ali Abdullah Saleh; they have been fighting for control of the country against groups at least nominally loyal to the current president, Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who is backed by Saudi Arabia and its Persian Gulf allies. In March 2015, the Saudi-led coalition began a campaign of airstrikes aimed at turning the tide against the Houthi-Saleh alliance. The campaign has largely failed, while reports of civilian deaths have grown common, and much of the country is on the brink of famine," Shuaib Almosawa and Ben Hubbard write for the New York Times.
"It?s not just the airstrikes that cause suffering. The war has driven Yemen from what was already a humanitarian crisis before the war to what is now more like a full-blown catastrophe. More than half of its 26 million people are considered food insecure, 2.8 million (more than 10 percent of all Yemenis) have been displaced from their homes, and the vital healthcare sector is almost non-existent," Annie Slemrod writes for IRIN News.
"In recent months, the Obama administration has faced mounting criticism for its backing of Saudi Arabia?s air campaign in Yemen. Lawmakers and human rights groups have urged a ban on U.S. arms sales to Riyadh, declaring that Washington bears some responsibility for the civilian casualties in Yemen," Sudarsan Raghavan writes for the Washington Post.