Yemen: Greater Aid Presence Urgently Needed in Ma'rib as Displacement Increases

Displaced persons in front of the shelter shared with them by their neighbours this week. Photo: IOM/Elham Al Oqabi

Ma’rib – The International Organization for Migration (IOM) is watching with growing alarm as increasing numbers of people are displaced in Yemen, adding to worrisome food security concerns.

Hostilities in Yemen’s Ma'rib governorate have led to the displacement of at least 9,000 people in recent weeks, bringing the total number of displacements in that part of the country to more than 117,000.

Humanitarian partners estimate that 385,000 people are at risk of further displacement, if frontlines shift. Hundreds of thousands of Ma'rib city’s estimated 3 million people could also be impacted by the fighting.

The latest epicentre of violence is Sirwah, a mountainous district in Ma'rib governorate. Sirwah district alone hosts around 30,000 displaced people in 14 displacement sites, three of which were directly impacted by fighting in recent weeks. All three were completely emptied, forcing already-displaced people to fleeing again to safety.

These displacement sites should be refuges. All civilians – including displaced people – must be afforded protection from the fighting, IOM advises.

The local community in Ma'rib has long welcomed vulnerable displaced people, but today the situation is far beyond something they can manage alone. Greater humanitarian presence and resources are urgently required to assist the people of Ma’rib.

For more information, please contact Olivia Headon at IOM Yemen, Tel: +967730552233, Email:  or Paul Dillon at IOM Geneva, Tel: +4179 636 9874, Email: