Inside one refugee camp in war-torn Yemen

Last Updated Dec 7, 2018 1:29 PM EST

YEMEN — Representatives from Yemen’s warring sides met in Sweden on Thursday to discuss prisoner swaps aimed at halting the country’s catastrophic three-year civil war. It was a glimmer of hope for peace in the country, which the United Nations says is in the midst of the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.

The fighting between a Saudi-led coalition and Iranian-backed rebels has killed more than 10,000 people and pushed millions to the brink of famine. The United States supplies weapons and intelligence to Saudi forces.

CBS News’ Elizabeth Palmer visited the Mishqafah camp in southern Yemen that houses roughly 2,500 people, all of whom fled fighting elsewhere in the country.

The people living there were always poor, but now they are destitute, she reports, residing in rudimentary shelters made of tarpaulin and bits of wood. They have no access to proper medical care.  

The Ali family can’t get help for their 6-year-old daughter, who has a serious neurological problem. Just a few weeks ago, a child in the camp died of cholera. 

The sanitation at the camp is dangerously bad, Palmer says. There are only a few basic latrines. Most people use the fields, and the situation is worse for women, who, for modesty’s sake, can only go out at night, alone in the dark.

The people living at the Mishqafah camp do, however, have access to just enough food to survive, Palmer reports. This is more than can be said for 14 million other Yemenis – the number of people that the United Nations says is at risk of serious hunger or starvation this winter. 

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