Angelina Jolie arrives in Yemen to aid refugee crisis amid Ukraine war: 'We cannot be selective'
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Angelina Jolie is on the ground in Yemen to aid refugees.
Jolie, 46, emphasized the need to support all displaced families and refugees as she arrived in the capital city of Yemen on Sunday amid the ongoing conflict between Ukraine and Russia.
The U.N. refugee agency said it hopes that Jolie’s visit would draw attention to growing humanitarian needs in Yemen, the Arab World’s poorest country, ahead of the annual High Level Pledging Conference for Yemen on March 16.
Angelina Jolie has arrived in Yemen ahead of a fundraiser for the country.
"I've landed in Aden, to meet displaced families and refugees for UNHCR @refugees and show my support for the people of Yemen," Jolie updated fans in the caption of her Isntagram post. "I will do my best to communicate from the ground as the days unfold."
"As we continue to watch the horrors unfolding in Ukraine, and call for an immediate end to the conflict and humanitarian access, I'm here in Yemen to support people who also desperately need peace. The situation here is one of the worst humanitarian crises in the world, with one civilian killed or injured every hour in 2022. An economy devastated by war, and over 20 million Yemenis depending on humanitarian assistance to survive," she added.
Jolie went on to compare the refugee crisis in Yemen to the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine as Russia invades the country. The actress, who serves as special envoy for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), emphasized that "everyone" deserves support.
Jolie updated fans on her efforts to help the citizens of Yemen. The country has been involved in a civil war since late 2014.
"This week a million people were forced to flee the horrific war in Ukraine. If we learn anything from this shocking situation, it is that we cannot be selective about who deserves support and whose rights we defend. Everyone deserves the same compassion," she penned. "The lives of civilian victims of conflict everywhere are of equal value. After seven years of war, the people of Yemen also need protection, support, and above all, peace."
Yemen has been convulsed by civil war since 2014, when the Iran-backed Houthi rebels took control of the capital, Sanaa, and much of the country’s north, forcing the government to flee to the south, then to Saudi Arabia.
A Saudi-led coalition, backed at the time by the United States, entered the war in 2015 to try to restore Yemen’s government to power.
Jolie likened the humanitarian crisis in Yemen to the war in Ukraine. The actress emphasized that "everyone" deserves support and that help can't be "selective."
Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24. The attack has prompted 1.7 million Ukrainians to flee the country.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.