The Cost of War

Since the start of the Saudi-led coalition's war on Yemen in March 2015, civilian safety has never been a priority. Doctors Without Borders recently called the conflict "A war on civilians," and most Yemenis have nowhere safe to flee.  

WHO has declared the total death toll above 10,000 as of August 2016, yet that number is likely much higher. Neither warring side has released numbers killed, and there have been hundreds of airstrikes where villagers bury their dead without reporting to local authorities.


The casualties of Yemen's war are not only airstrike deaths. Child acute malnutrition rates have skyrocketed, most clinics closed due to violence. Injured Yemenis are unable to get proper treatment in-country, and not allowed to travel outside, leaving them vulnerable to permanent disability. The psychological damage can not begin to be measured.

A blockade has prevented essential fuel, medical supplies, and food from entering the country, cut power lines have left Yemen in the dark and shut down hospitals. Without fuel, citizens can not flee from violence, reach health care, or power their homes and businesses. 

As long as the ruling powers in and out of Yemen disagree, civilians will continue to suffer.

Smoke from an airstrike on al Orthy Hospital rises from the Ministry of Defense complex in Sana'a, Yemen on June 9, 2015.

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A Yemeni man looks on in shock while local men attempt to pull their neighbors from the rubble of an airstrike in Old Sana'a, Yemen on June 12, 2015. 

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Yemeni men attempt to pull their neighbors from the rubble of an airstrike in Old Sana'a, Yemen on June 12, 2015.

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Yemeni men pull Shawki Qalala, a doctor at one of Sana'a's top hospitals, from the rubble following an airstrike on the Old City of Sana'a, Yemen on June 12, 2015. 

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Yemeni men attempt to pull their neighbors from the rubble after an airstrike on Old Sana'a, Yemen on June 12, 2015. The strike on the UNESCO World Heritage site killed five people from one family and destroyed five of the historical homes. 

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Glass and shrapnel cover the living room of a home in al Joob, Yemen, after an airstrike hit a nearby market, killing thirty civilians, July 7, 2015. 

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girl from Yemen's marginalized community, the Muhammashin, stands for a portrait in the ruins of her home after it was hit by and airstrike on July 16, 2015.
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A Yemeni man from Al Joob lifts the thobe, a traditional robe, to show a shrapnel wound on a boy from the village on July 7, 2015. The injured youth was one of several boys selling produce to passing cars when the Saudi-led coalition airstrike hit, sprayi

A Yemeni man from Al Joob lifts the thobe, a traditional robe, to show a shrapnel wound on a boy from the village on July 7, 2015. The injured youth was one of several boys selling produce to passing cars when the Saudi-led coalition airstrike hit, sprayi ng them with shrapnel and killing nine children.

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A Yemeni woman grasps her prayer beads at a school where she is now living on June 10, 2015 in Sana'a, Yemen. Over one million Yemenis have been displaced from their homes. 

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The crescent moon shines above the skeleton of a home in Old Sana'a after an airstrike that killed five members of one family, June 12, 2015. Homes in the Old City are made of dirt, wood, bricks, and plaster, and crumbled to dust under the airstrikes.  

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Yemeni boys drink tea in the darkness near the Old City of Sana'a on June 6, 2015. Since the war, most of the country has been plunged into darkness, leaving families to rely on generators for which there is no fuel, or expensive solar panels

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Ahmad Asaba sits as his friend Tareq cleans his wounds on July 4, 2015. Ahmad and his brother Muhammad were severely burned in a car bomb at Qubba al Mahdi Mosque. 

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Yemeni brothers climb the broken stairs of an apartment building damaged by airstrikes in the Faj Attan district of Sana'a, Yemen on August 17, 2015. Faj Attan mountain may have a large weapons cache inside, which, if hit by an airstrike, some assume could wipe out half the city.

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A Yemeni man walks home in the Al Qasimi area of Old Sana'a that was destroyed from an airstrike, August 6, 2015 in Sana'a, Yemen.

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in Al Joob Village, Amran Governorate, Yemen on July 7, 2015. Two airstrikes on July 6 hit a public market near homes and a mosque and farmers selling produce on the side of the road; the two combined killed over 30 civilians.

A Yemeni boy surveys the damage to a mosque in Al Joob Village, Amran Governorate, Yemen on July 7, 2015. Two airstrikes on July 6 hit a public market near homes and a mosque and farmers selling produce on the side of the road; the two combined killed over 30 civilians.

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A young Yemeni man recovers in the hospital from his wounds in Amran, Yemen on July 7, 2015.

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Mohammad Abdulrab Qahed stands for a portrait with his wife, Um Saad , and children Imad, Wiam, and Dua'a, at a school where they now live in Sana'a, Yemen on June 10, 2015. They are just one family out of the nearly 1.3 million Yemenis forced to leave their homes since the war began. 

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Yemeni women and children play near the Silah, a drainage road running around Old Sana'a, after heavy afternoon rains on August 6, 2015. Even before the war, Yemen had a severe water shortage; with the conflict complicating things, families have an even harder time accessing enough clean water.

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Lights illuminate the Old Sana'a during a rare hour of power for half the city on May 23, 2015. While power before the war was available for twelve hours a day, now it rarely comes more than a couple hours a week.

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