Yemeni Capital Turned Into Ghost Town in Escalating War

September 26, 2018

Yemen’s capital Sanaa has almost empty streets. A fuel shortage has forced thousands of vehicles to die off silently from the roads. This has turned the busy city into a ghost town.

The few operating gas stations have thousands of vehicles and motorcycles lined up. Most drivers are failing to get even a few liters at the end of each day.

The escalating war in the region has led to the fuel crisis in the Red Sea port city of Hodeidah which followed the failure of peace talks which were brokered by the United Nations in Geneva between the rival parties.

The port city has been turned into a military zone by the fighting between the forces of Sunni government fighters who have the backing of a Saudi-led coalition and Shiite Houthi rebels. This has totally stopped the imports to the rebel-held heavily populated northern cities which also includes Sanaa.

The Yemeni riyal has perished to its lowest rate against the foreign currencies and thus the prices of foods have skyrocketed. For the citizens, this situation is like a “mass genocide”.

One liter of petrol costs 425 Yemeni riyals where one US dollar equals 650 riyals. Before the civil war started, one US dollar was 250 riyals. Petrol is also available on the black market at exorbitant prices but people can no longer afford them.

Professionals have not got payment since the war started in the poor country in the Arab. Many people walk on foot as there is no fuel to run the public transportation.

In the southern cities like Aden, thousands of people are protesting the severe rise in prices of food and huge fall of the local currency riyal.

The Prime Minister, Ahmed Obaid bin Daghr has issue warnings that the deteriorating economic situations could lead to humanitarian and political catastrophes in the country. He has said that his government would take all requisite steps to face the crisis.