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Arab coalition continues humanitarian aid to Yemen

A displaced Yemeni child sits on boxes and sacks of Saudi-provided humanitarian food aid at a camp in Yemen's northeastern province of Marib on January 26, 2018. (AFP / ABDULLAH AL-QADRY)
Workers unload humanitarian aid packages from a Saudi air force cargo plane, at an airfield in Yemen’s central province of Marib, on Sunday. (AFP)
RIYADH: More than 19 ships are at Yemeni ports carrying humanitarian aid for the Yemeni people, said Col. Turki Al-Maliki, spokesman for the Saudi-led Arab coalition, on Monday.
In addition, 12 aid flights have been sent to Yemen’s port city of Aden within a week to relieve the people’s suffering, he said.
“Yemeni people have a right to humanitarian aid and this right should not be disrupted,” Al-Maliki emphasized.
The colonel then conveyed a message from a Yemeni child who was abducted and taken into the custody of the Iranian-backed Houthi militia, and forced to be trained as a soldier. He was 13 years old and had given the message personally to Al-Maliki, warning others like him.
During the past week, many Houthis tried to cross the border and enter Saudi Arabia through various means, one of them being camouflage.
“Ninety-one ballistic missiles have been fired at Saudi Arabia since the beginning of the coalition,” Al-Maliki said. “While the Houthis are laying landmines, the coalition is rebuilding infrastructure.”
Last week, the foreign ministers of the coalition members announced a $1.5 billion humanitarian aid package for Yemen.
“The coalition will coordinate ... $1.5 billion in new humanitarian aid funding for distribution across UN agencies and international relief organizations,” the coalition announced in a statement.
The aid package is in addition to the $2 billion Saudi cash injection to Yemen’s central bank.
The estimated number of Yemeni people in need of humanitarian help is close to 21 million, 10 million of whom are in dire need.
Since 2015 the Kingdom has delivered $8.1 billion in humanitarian assistance as well as $2 billion in development aid.

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