12.08.2019 - Article

Humanitarian Situation

  • According to the United Nations, the humanitarian crisis in Yemen is the worst in the world. It has escalated repeatedly since conflict broke out in Yemen in March 2015.
  • Of the country’s 30 million inhabitants, 24 million are dependent on humanitarian assistance.
  • The United Nations has warned of acute famine.
  • 20 million people have no access to basic health care. Many have no access to clean water or sanitation.
  • The number of internally displaced persons stands at over three million.
  • The United Nations says that there are around 190,000 refugees from Yemen outside the country, many of them in Oman, Saudi Arabia, Djibouti and Somalia. At the same time, many African refugees arrive in Yemen, particularly from Somalia.


Name: Republic of Yemen (Al-Jumhuriya al-Yemenia)

Capital: Sana’a with approximately 2.2 million inhabitants

Located in the south west of the Arabian Peninsula, the country borders the Red Sea to the west, the Indian Ocean (Gulf of Aden) to the south, Oman to the east and Saudi Arabia to the north east and north.

Climate: Mountainous territory with capital Sana’a (2200m above sea level): temperate climate with an average annual temperature of 21°C and relative humidity of 20 to 50 percent, maximum temperature in June/July up to 38°C, minimum temperature in December/January at night falling below zero; coastal plain on the Red Sea (Tihama), southern and eastern provinces (Aden and Hadramaut): hot and humid tropical climate with temperatures between 25°C and 48°C and a relative humidity between 65 and 90 percent; arid desert climate in the north and north east of the country (Rub al-Khali)

Area: Yemen and Saudi Arabia definitively settled their common border with the Treaty of Jeddah in June 2000. It has been fully demarcated since mid-2006. Yemen’s total area is 528,000km2 (second-largest country on the Arabian Peninsula; almost the same total area as France).

Population: 28.5 million (estimate for 2018), annual rate of growth 2.4 percent (estimate for 2018)

Official language: Arabic

Religions: Islam is the official state religion (Sunni Shafi’i in the south, Shiite Zaidi in the north and Ismaili minority); in addition, small communities of Yemenite Jews, Twelver Shiites and Baha’i, as well as Christians and Hindus from abroad.

National Day: 22 May: day marking the unification of the Yemen Arab Republic and the People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen (1990); other national holidays: 26 September (day marking the revolution in North Yemen in 1962), 14 October (day marking the revolution in South Yemen in 1963) and 30 November (day marking the end of British colonial rule in South Yemen in 1967)

Independence: Former Mutawakkilite Kingdom of Yemen (1918); former People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen (1967)

Establishment of diplomatic relations:

  • 24 October 1962 (between the Federal Republic of Germany and the Yemen Arab Republic (North Yemen)
  • 19 December 1967 (between the Federal Republic of Germany and the People’s Republic of South Yemen (South Yemen)
  • 21 December 1972 (between the German Democratic Republic and the Yemen Arab Republic (North Yemen)
  • 10 July 1969 (between the German Democratic Republic and the People’s Republic of South Yemen (South Yemen)

System of government: Constitutional presidential system

Head of State: President Abdrabu Mansour Hadi (elected as Interim President on 21 February 2012); President Hadi has resided in Saudi Arabia since the end of March 2015 owing to the hostilities in Yemen.

Head of Government: Prime Minister Maeen Abdulmalik Saeed (since 15 October 2018)

Foreign Minister: post currently vacant

Parliament: 301 seats – most recently elected on 27 April 2003; Speaker of the House of Representatives: Sultan al-Barakani (elected on 13 April 2019, at the first meeting of parliament since the outbreak of conflict in 2015); numerous members of parliament are currently residing abroad.

Trade unions: Independent trade union federation with nine branches and approximately 300,000 members

Administrative structure: 21 governorates + capital district; centralised administration with decentralised approaches

Membership of international organisations: United Nations with subsidiary organisations; World Trade Organization (WTO), World Bank, International Monetary Fund (IMF), Arab League, Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), Non-Aligned Movement

Gross domestic product: 26.91 billion US dollars (estimate for 2018)

Real growth: -2.7 percent (estimate for 2018)

Per-capita income: 944.21 US dollars (estimate for 2018)

Currency: Yemeni Rial (YER); the exchange rate has been free floating since 1996. Average rate on 25 March 2019: 1 euro = 283 YER (official rate)

Inflation rate: Approximately 37.4 percent (estimate for 2019)

This text is intended as a source of basic information. It is regularly updated. No liability can be accepted for the accuracy or completeness of its Contents.

Related content


Top of page