The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) recorded that more than 50,000 people arrived in Yemen, and hundreds have died or disappeared, crossing from Horn of Africa, the real number is likely much higher. Most are Somalis fleeing chaos and violence with some Ethiopians and Eritreans fleeing persecution. As the situation in Yemen worsens, asylum seekers and migrants are detained by armed groups and criminals under horrific conditions. Despite the risks, refugees continue to arrive in their thousands.
After a brief rest, refugees continue their journey to reach a reception center run by UNHCR, UN refugee agency, near the Village of Bir Ali on Yemeni coast.
2 / 19
As the sun rises, drowning victims appear in daylight near the Village of Ahwar in southern Yemen December 1, 2008.
3 / 19
Refugees who were stranded in the sea are rescued by local fishermen and brought to shore after being forced into the water offshore. Many of their fellow passengers were not so fortunate, lost their lives to the sea. At least 28 people drowned and two were reported missing on this Monday morning after smugglers carrying them across the Gulf of Aden from Somalia forced them to jump overboard in deep water. The boat was reportedly carrying around 115 passengers.
4 / 19
Refugees rescued by local fishermen are brought to a shore after being forced into the water far offshore. Like the victim in the foreground, many of their fellow passengers were not so lucky, lost their lives to the sea.
5 / 19
A Somali man offer his biscuit to another refugee at the beach after landing.
6 / 19
Fadua Ibrahim Haj Mohamed from Ethiopia walks along the beach she just reached in search of her older sister on December 1, 2008 near the town of Afwar on the Yemeni coast. She is carrying Riyadh Mukhter Sutlan, 1 year and 5 month old, the son of her missing sister. After exhausting the search, she believed that her sibling was dead, however Fozia Ahmed Hoshin, was rescued by fishermen and united with her family at a reception center.
7 / 19
Somali nurse dispenses medicine to a newly arrived refugee from Somalia at a reception center in Maifa, Yemen.
8 / 19
A refugee being treated by MSF (Doctors Without Borders) staff at a reception center in Ahwar on the Yemeni coast. The new arrivals received first aid, food and water on the shore and then transferred to the reception center for a complete medical examination by MSF and assistance from various other organizations.
9 / 19
Refugees recuperate at a reception center in Ahwar the day after their arrival at the Yemeni coast from Somalia. Two sisters and a cousin traveled together from Mogadishu to Bosasso, Somaliland, then to Yemen. After being ejected into the open water in total darkness of a moonless night, they called to each other to stay alive. After recovery, they will either try to find work in Yemen, the poorest nation in Middle East in the middle of the civil war in the world's worst humanitarian crisis, or get smuggled into other countries such as Saudi Arabia.
10 / 19
Refugees just landed on the Yemeni coast being transported to a reception center near the Village of Bir Ali on Yemeni coast.
11 / 19
Drowned bodies found on the beach in the morning being transported to a graveyard.
12 / 19
In 2011, Somalia faced a severe humanitarian crisis and the worst food security in Africa since its famine 20 years ago. At least 3.7 million people, about half of Somalia's population, needed food, and around 3.2 million people were in extreme need of immediate lifesaving aid. In neighboring Ethiopia, UNHCR, the UN refugee agency, reported that 10 somali children under five were dying every day of hunger related causes in Kobe refugee camp near the border with Somalia. This rate continued and amounted to at least 500 death of young children.
13 / 19
Although the causes of continued exodus and growing death toll from the famine in Somalia are numerous – including drought, high food prices and the absence of a government for two decades – al Shabaab, the al-Qaida-linked Islamist movement has played a significant role. In 2009, al-Shabaab banned a number of aid organizations, including the UN World Food Program. Millions of Somalis lost their safety net when the drought worsened. In early July the rebels announced aid agencies would be allowed to assist with drought relief, but then backtracked after UN declared the famine in the parts of Somalia, denying the UN report and saying the earlier ban on certain organizations stood. A new report by Human Rights Watch confirmed that, in some areas, al-Shabaab militias had tried to prevent people from leaving to seek outside help, even those pushed close to death by hunger.
A broken-down Soviet-era tank used by Ethiopian Army to fight Somali militant before their withdrawal in early 1990s, part of landscape near Kobe Refugee camp in southeastern Ethiopia, August 10, 2011.
14 / 19
2-year-old Ali Abshir is being treated for severe malnutrition at a health clinic run by MSF (Doctors without Borders) a transit center in Dollo Ado in southeastern Ethiopia, a few kilometers from Somalia/Ethiopia border, August 10, 2011. UNHCR, the UN refugees agency, stated that the rate of severe malnutrition among children under 15 was 32 percent.
15 / 19
Mohammed Ibrahim carries the body of his 1 1/2-year-old daughter Sahro Mohammed to her grave in Kobe Refugee Camp in southeastern Ethiopia, a few kilometers from Somalia/Ethiopia border, August 12, 2011.
16 / 19
1 1/2-year-old Sahro Mohammed is being buried in Kobe Refugee Camp in southeastern Ethiopia, a few kilometers from Somalia/Ethiopia border, August 12, 2011.
17 / 19
Rows of dead at a temporary graveyard in Kobe Refugee Camp in southeastern Ethiopia, a few kilometers from Somalia/Ethiopia border, August 12, 2011.
18 / 19
A malnourished Somali boy is being checked upon their arrival at clinic run by MSF (Doctors without Borders) in Malkadida Refugee Camp in southeastern Ethiopia, a few kilometers from Somalia/Ethiopia border, August 12, 2011.
19 / 19
Children try to bring sense of normalcy in Kobe Refugee Camp in southeastern Ethiopia, a few 12, 2011.