Skip to main content
European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations
News article1 March 2024Directorate-General for European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO)1 min read

In February, the EU has organised 13 Humanitarian Air Bridges to Yemen to fight health emergency

Goods, standing on a platform, being loaded onto a plane in the dark. A large door of the plane stands upright open.
© European Union, 2024

To respond to life-threatening outbreaks of infectious diseases in Yemen and the subsequent health emergency among the affected population, the EU has organised 13 Humanitarian Air Bridge flights to deliver vital assistance to civilians. 

These flights have enabled humanitarian partners to cover the immediate needs of the population and support Yemen's preparedness for potential future outbreaks of infectious diseases such as cholera. 

The flights served primarily the airports of Aden and Sana'a, carrying over 163 tonnes of aid including medicines, vaccines and other medical items. The aid was channelled from Europe and EU aid stockpiles in Dubai to Yemen via Nairobi. 

Commissioner for Crisis Management, Janez Lenarčič, said: “The EU stands by Yemenis in need as the ongoing health emergency poses a threat to human lives and puts the capacity of the local health system under heavy strain. I thank our humanitarian partners for their dedication and immense coordination.”


Yemen is one of the world's largest ongoing humanitarian crises, with an estimated 18.2 million people in need of humanitarian assistance and protection services. More than 4.5 million have been displaced over the years, often multiple times, while close to 17 million people face acute food insecurity. Malnutrition has also reached unprecedented levels, among the highest in the world.

The health system in on the brink of collapse, with vaccination campaigns increasingly challenged by access constraints, leading to recurrent epidemic outbreaks and transmissible diseases, including measles, polio and cholera.

Since 2015, the EU has contributed almost €1.5 billion to respond to the crisis in Yemen. This includes over €1 billion in humanitarian aid and €487 million in development assistance.

We support those directly affected by conflict, disasters or displacement, as well as households impacted by food insecurity and health crises. Through our partners, we continue to help people across the country including those in active conflict zones and hard-to-reach areas.

In 2023, the EU allocated over €145 million in humanitarian aid to assist those affected by the conflict in Yemen focusing on the most vulnerable and disadvantaged.