12 million people expected to be struck by famine in Yemen warns United Nations

The UN says that 17.1 million people struggle to eat in the war-torn country.

Yemen: Over 2.3m people forced to flee homes due to civil warIBTimes UK

Twelve million people in Yemen could be subject to famine this year, with a staggering 2.2 million children acutely malnourished and in need of urgent care, says the United Nations.

The organisation has appealed for £1.7m ($2.12m) in order to help the country, which is on the brink of starvation after a series of its major roads, neighbourhoods and bridges have been blocked during the two-year civil war, resulting in a severe shortage of food, electricity and clean drinking water.

It is estimated that 17.1 million out of the country's 24.4 million population are struggling to feed themselves, which is around two-thirds of the country.

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Stephen Anderson, director of Yemen's world food programme, said: "The current level of hunger in Yemen is unprecedented, which is translating into severe hardship and negative humanitarian consequences for millions of Yemenis, particularly affecting vulnerable groups.

"Tragically, we see more and more families skipping meals or going to bed hungry, while children and mothers are slipping away with little to sustain themselves."

A child under the age of five is dying every five minutes, said an Al-Jazeera report.

The war, between the Yemeni government of President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi and the Houthi rebels, saw the Houthis take hold of the country's capital, Sanaa, in 2014.

The UN refugee agency UNCHR estimates that 2.4 million Yemenis have fled their homes, and 120,000 have fled the country.

At least 10,000 civilians have been killed in the fighting, say Reuters.

President Donald Trump has also been criticised for authorising a raid on Al-Qaeda militants in Yemen's al-Bayda province, killing nine children under the age of 13, as well as three-month-old baby, said the Bureau of Investigative Journalism.

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In spite of these deaths, and the mission's reported failure to complete its main objectives, Sean Spicer, Trump's press secretary, has insisted that the mission was a "successful operation by all standards".

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