Yemen is in the midst of a complex emergency and its humanitarian needs continue to grow at an alarming rate. Samuel Aranda, photojournalist and winner of the prestigious World Press Photo of the Year for 2012 for an image taken in Yemen during last year’s civil unrest, has spent the last month documenting displacement in Yemen. Samuel has focused on those who are particularly vulnerable; Yemenis who have become displaced from their homes in the north and south due to conflict, and refugees, asylum seekers and migrants fleeing the Horn of Africa in hopes of finding refuge in Yemen.
UNHCR, the Embassy of the Netherlands and Embassy of Spain are proud to announce the opening of an exhibition of Samuel’s work entitled Refugees and IDPs in Yemen on 30 June in the Spanish Embassy, Sana’a.
Samuel has been covering migrations for many years, documenting Africans from West and North Africa as well as Afghan refugees, all struggling to reach Europe. “I have always had a special connection with people that have to move from their home land in search of a safe and better future. In my family my parents had to migrate during the Franco-era from the poor south of Spain to Catalonia. Before I arrived last year I didn’t know how difficult the situation was for refugees and internally displaced people in Yemen, and that’s why I wanted to document their lives. To raise awareness and show how these people need and deserve our help.”
Conflict and insecurity as well as the worsening economic situation in Yemen has meant that many refugees who were self-reliant are now finding it difficult to find income generating opportunities. As well, addressing displacement is a key component of promoting stability in the country. No meaningful or lasting resolution to these conflicts can be achieved without addressing the plight of Yemen's displaced persons. Yemen needs the continued support of its neighbours and the international community during this critical transitional period in order to ensure peace and stability in the country and the region, and in addressing the needs of those most in need.