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Yemenis celebrate Eid Al-Adha despite agonizing years of conflict

By Sami Numan ADEN, July 25 (KUNA) -- Yemen, feeling brunt of years long conflict that devastated their social, economic and recently health conditions, defied all the odds and celebrated Eid Al-Adha in a jubilation rarely seen in similar crises.
Eid Al-Adha prayers were held in grand and small mosques in southwestern city of Taez, and KUNA correspondent witnessed the police directing vehicles and motorbikes to open areas to avoid congestion.
Worshippers did not really care about health conditions put in place due to the coronavirus pandemic. There was not distancing, no masks nor sanitizers, and people were shaking hands and hugging each other.
Official figures showed a sharp decline in Covid-19 deaths and infections in the past two months.
"Lack of health measures was a result of a recent sharp decline of spread of coronavirus pandemic," Dr. Nashwan Al-Husami, director of Isolation Center at the Republican Hospital in Taez.
"There are few cases in the isolation center," he told KUNA.
He said people believed they needed to live normal life and acquire natural immunity, and to deal with Covid-19 as a regular influenza.
"People have become more aware of the disease and its symptoms, and go to hospital when they feel them," he explained.
The dire economic conditions coupled with sharp depreciation of local currency and its impacts on living conditions did not stop the Yemenis from their social activities, foremost exchanging of visits and celebrating eid.
However, fire works were ruining the happiness. Scores of children were burned or injured in their hands, bodies and eyes because of firecrackers. Children were also using toy guns that look like Kalashnikov which fire small plastic balls which can eventually caused injuries.
Al-Ahdal Opthalmology Hospital in Taez received, during Eid Al-Adha holiday last week, 25 chilren who had eye injuries, of them 18 suffered severe bleeding.
On the other hand, the government departments in Taez, which has been surrounded by the houthi militias for seven years, organized activities that would help people celebrate the Eid.
The Cultural Ministry's office in Taez has been organizing a musical in the past four years. The event was held at the historic theater of Cairo Caslte, attracting thousands of visitors daily during eid holiday.
Other families were picnicking at green valleys, enjoying spings and waterfalls.
The bloody conflict has multi-faceted devastated impacts on the Yemeni people but it did not succeed in preventing them from their exploring the least opportunities in their daily life. (end) sns.bs