Saudi Arabia and UAE Launch $500 Million Yemen Aid Initiative
Kingdom had joined hands with the UAE and Kuwait to bolster UN humanitarian effort in Yemen by donating $1.25bn
RIYADH, November 20, 2018 – Saudi Arabia’s King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre (KSRelief) and Emirates Red Crescent on Tuesday announced a joint US$500 million aid initiative to alleviate a food crisis in Yemen. The move will benefit 10 to 12 million Yemenis.
Announcing the initiative at a joint press conference in Riyadh, Dr Abdullah Al Rabeeah, General Supervisor of KSRelief and a Royal Court Advisor, said: “Saudi Arabia and UAE together seek to alleviate the suffering of Yemenis.”
In a statement, Dr Al Rabeeah added: “The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are launching the ‘Imdad’ initiative to provide US $500 million of additional support to help fulfill the most pressing humanitarian needs in the food and nutrition sectors through the United Nations, and international, regional and local organizations.”
“The initiative will serve 10-12 million Yemenis affected by the current situation, and will see each country provide half of the total amount aforementioned. The Kingdom and UAE have decided to respond to the humanitarian situation in Yemen, and contribute again to end the shortage of food needs in the country. The two countries will help in alleviating the suffering of our brothers, the Yemeni people, and ensure they gain access to food and nutrition for children in all regions and governorates of Yemen.”
This comes as an extension of the support provided by the Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Kuwait to the 2018 UN Humanitarian Response Plan, which reached a total amount of US $1.25 billion, in addition to what was provided through direct humanitarian intervention from the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre, the UAE Red Crescent, and other countries of the Coalition, he said.
The amount is in addition to the total $18 billion the Coalition countries contributed towards humanitarian aid for Yemen since March 2015.
“Today’s initiative focuses on the most urgent and for the most vulnerable,” Reem Al Hashimy, UAE’s Minister of State for International Cooperation, told the news conference. “It is estimated that 10-12 million Yemenis are the most vulnerable, and out of them, 2.1 million are thought to be children who are malnourished and we are focusing on alleviating this suffering.”
Yemen has been the biggest aid beneficiary from KSRelief since its establishment in 2015.