Yemen’s ongoing civil war creates a life of loss for children

Jane Ferguson - PBS NewsHour

This segment for PBS NewsHour explores the impact of Yemen's civil war on children, particularly those who have lost one or both parents by death or abandonment. In the segment, special correspondent Jane Ferguson reports from Yemen's oldest orphanage, which houses around 400 boys, "some sent here by extended family, others abandoned by their destitute parents or taken in from the streets." Ferguson explains "in the Arab world, children are often considered orphans when their father dies. In Yemen, impoverished by the war, single mothers can rarely cope. Some are forced to remarry and start new families." Thus, some of those children who lose a father in the armed conflict are placed in orphanages, even though they have a living mother.

"The majority [of boys] have come here because their father died," says Ahmed Abdulmalek Al Khazan. "And, in some cases, it's because divorce happens and a mother has remarried. But it's also because of poverty."