Sun Dec 18, 2016 05:17PM
A Yemeni policeman stands in front of the Central Bank of Yemen in the capital, Sana'a, August 25, 2016. (Photo by AFP)
A Yemeni policeman stands in front of the Central Bank of Yemen in the capital, Sana'a, August 25, 2016. (Photo by AFP)

Yemen is struggling with the issue of wheat imports amid Saudi Arabia's ongoing campaign against the impoverished country, the UN says.

Jamie McGoldrick, the UN humanitarian coordinator for Yemen, said on Sunday that the imports of basic goods had become an issue since the Central Bank of Yemen was moved from the capital, Sana'a, to the southern city of Aden.

"Four major importers of wheat into this country have informed the authorities (in Sana'a) that as of January they will no longer be able to fulfill their obligations," the UN official said, adding, "We know it is very difficult for these importers to get lines of credit on the open market."

"Because the central bank is no longer here in Sana'a," McGoldrick said.

The UN official also stated that the imports of goods and medicine had been hampered by slow offloading due to the damage in the port of Hudaydah.

In October, the UN aid chief, Stephen O'Brien, said "smashed cranes" at the port were hindering the entry of aid supplies to ease the deteriorating humanitarian crisis in Yemen.

The photo taken on October 8, 2016, shows a general view of destruction following Saudi airstrikes on a funeral hall in the Yemeni capital, Sana'a. (Photo by AFP)

Saudi Arabia has been engaged in a deadly campaign against Yemen since March 2015 in an attempt to reinstall the former Yemeni government and to undermine Houthi Ansarullah movement.

Saudi airstrikes have taken a heavy toll on the impoverished country’s facilities and infrastructure, destroying many hospitals, schools, and factories.

The Saudi campaign has claimed the lives of more than 11,400 people, according to figures compiled by the Yemeni non-governmental monitoring group Legal Center for Rights and Development.

Yemen is also grappling with the scarcity of food supplies and an outbreak of diseases amid the Saudi war.

The UN children’s fund, UNICEF, says 7.4 million Yemeni children are in dire need of medical help, and 370,000 run the risk of being hit by acute malnutrition.