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Girls who were displaced due to the ongoing war carry jerry cans to collect water at an internally displaced camp. Photo: Mohammed Hamoud/Getty Images

The U.S. will restore full humanitarian assistance funding to areas of rebel-held northern Yemen to help millions on the brink of famine, the State Department announced on Friday.

Why it matters: "Fighting and massive displacement of people, crippling fuel shortages and rising food prices have 50,000 Yemenis already caught up in famine and 5 million more a step away from it, the United Nations says," per AP.

  • Roughly 400,000 children in the country under age 5 are at risk of dying from malnutrition, according to U.N. projections.

Context: Friday’s announcement comes almost a year after the Trump administration halted some aid to the country, claiming that Houthis were diverting the foreign assistance for themselves.

  • The renewed U.S. humanitarian support comes with additional monitoring and measures to ensure the rebels do not interfere with the aid, a senior official for humanitarian assistance at the U.S. AID told AP.

What they're saying: “The United States supports the free flow of fuel, food, and other essential goods into Yemen," State Department spokesperson Ned Price said Friday. "However, doing so requires not only that goods pass smoothly through ports, but also that they are allowed to pass through the country freely, including through areas under Houthi control.”

  • Tim Lenderking, U.N. special envoy for Yemen, expressed concern that the Houthi rebels were blocking fuel deliveries to a main port and "focusing on fighting to capture more territory," AP writes.
  • "Tragically, and somewhat confusingly for me, it appears that the Houthis are prioritizing a military campaign to seize central Marib province," Lenderking added.

Flashback: The civil war in Yemen began in 2014 when Houthi rebels seized the capital, Sanaa, and territory in the north. Saudi Arabia in 2015 tried to force the rebels out through an unsuccessful air strike.

What to watch: The Biden administration aims to revive U.S. diplomatic efforts to end the nation's conflict, reversing previous administrations’ support for the Saudi-led military offensive that sought to roll back the Iran-allied Houthi rebels.

  • So far, "The rebels have shown no sign of relenting despite Biden’s diplomatic overtures, adding to tensions between the U.S. and its strategic partner Saudi Arabia," AP writes.

Go deeper

Pelosi announces bid for re-election ahead of 2022 midterms

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) announced her bid for re-election Tuesday, amid a deluge of other safe-seat Democrats announcing their retirements.

Why it matters: Pelosi’s announcement follows months of speculation — despite her denials — that she was preparing to leave Congress.

Scoop: Qatar emir to visit White House on Monday

The emir of Qatar, Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, leaves the White House after meeting President Trump in 2019. Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images

The emir of Qatar will meet with President Biden at the White House on Monday to discuss Afghanistan as well as contingency plans to provide natural gas to Europe in the event of a Russian invasion of Ukraine, Axios has learned.

Why it matters: Europe's reliance on Russia for 40% of its natural gas is undermining Biden's attempts to coordinate "massive" sanctions to be imposed from both sides of the Atlantic if Russia invades. The White House wants Qatar to help ensure European countries can enforce tough sanctions without risking an energy crisis.

Biden: There won't be "American forces moving into Ukraine"

President Joe Biden told reporters Tuesday that he does not foresee U.S. troops moving into Ukraine.

Why it matters: Biden's comments come as tensions between Russia and Ukraine persist, and a Russian invasion of Ukraine appears increasingly likely.