UK's Yemen appeal raises £11m in first week

child in campaign poster Image copyright DEC

A UK appeal to help millions of people facing hunger in war-torn Yemen has raised £11m in its first week.

The Disaster Emergency Committee (DEC), which represents 13 aid charities, has said Yemen is at "breaking point", with children dying from malnutrition.

The appeal, fronted by television presenter Clare Balding, was launched on TV and radio last week.

The money raised includes more than £4m from the UK government through the Aid Match fund.

More than 21 months of conflict have devastated Yemen, and left 18 million people in need of some kind of humanitarian assistance.

The DEC said child malnutrition was at an all-time high with an infant dying every 10 minutes because of preventable diseases.

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The UK is supporting the Saudi-led coalition which is backing the Yemen government against the Houthi rebel movement in the country.

On Monday, the UK government confirmed cluster bombs made in the UK have been used in the conflict.

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Despite the conflict, the DEC said member charities were reaching millions of people across the country with lifesaving aid, such as food, medical care and clean water but the funds mean they can reach many more.

Chief Executive Saleh Saeed thanked those who had donated.

"The UK public's generosity is overwhelming, which has been boosted by the UK government's significant contribution through DFID's Aid Match," she said.

"The £11m raised so far will make an extraordinary difference to children who face life-threatening disease and families who do not know where their next meal is coming from.

"We'll be able to provide more nutritious peanut paste to infants and toddlers, cash to parents who cannot afford the very basics and emergency treatment to those on the brink of starvation."

The DEC represents 13 UK aid charities including British Red Cross, Oxfam, Save The Children and Christian Aid.

Previous DEC appeals include the Nepal Earthquake campaign, where the UK public donated a total of £87m.

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