Saudi Arabia ‘providing relief to all in need in Yemen without discrimination’

In this Feb. 3, 2018 photo, a relief worker signals a forklift driver unloading aid carried into Yemen by the Saudi military in Marib, Yemen. (AP)
Updated 20 March 2018

Saudi Arabia ‘providing relief to all in need in Yemen without discrimination’

RIYADH: The King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSrelief) launched a fresh campaign on Monday to deliver humanitarian aid in Yemen, saying that the center provided relief without discrimination to areas under legitimate rule and those controlled by the Houthis.
“The center has continued to deliver comprehensive humanitarian aid in Yemen, as well as providing fuel to hospitals and water plants across the country within its efforts to deliver humanitarian assistance to all Yemeni people,” said Nasser Al-Nafe, a center spokesman.
He told Arab News that KSrelief had distributed 42,000 food baskets and 21,000 ready-to-eat meals in the northern province of Hajjah, currently under the control of the Houthi militias, as a part of Yemen Comprehensive Humanitarian Operations (YCHO).
He added, however, that in certain areas controlled by the Houthi militants the center was delivering humanitarian aid without its banner as “our aim is to ensure relief supply to those in need without interruption and without discrimination.”
Despite harassment, serious violations of international norms and arrests by the militias that control the area of the field team distributing food and other aid, it had been able to reach all the distressed areas, he said.
He said that during the six months of distribution, the number of beneficiaries reached 252,402, including 137,318 children and 56,205 women.
While providing humanitarian assistance, the center aims to maintain several projects including addressing malnutrition in children and pregnant and lactating mothers, as well as a water supply project.
Meanwhile, the center on Sunday launched a new campaign to distribute food aid in the liberated districts of Al-Khokha and Al-Hayes in the southern province of Hodeidah. This relief campaign aims to deliver 22,000 food baskets to the target groups in the two districts, with 11,000 food baskets per district.
Saudi Arabia signed an agreement last Thursday to deposit $2 billion in Yemen’s Central Bank under the directives of King Salman to save the Yemeni economy and currency from collapse.
The agreement was signed by Finance Minister Mohammed Al-Jadaan and Yemeni Central Bank’s Governor Mohammed bin Mansour Zammam in the Saudi capital.
Earlier, King Salman issued a directive in January to transfer $2 billion to the Central Bank of Yemen.
The deposit of the new Saudi grant has helped to curb the continued deterioration of the Yemeni currency, which recovered part of its lost value against other foreign currencies, with the banking sector predicting that the deposit would stabilize the Yemeni market.

Saudi Arabia to send Syrians an additional $100 million of humanitarian aid

Updated 26 April 2018

Saudi Arabia to send Syrians an additional $100 million of humanitarian aid

  • Total relief provided by the Kingdom since the war began now stands at about $1billion
  • Latest package announced by Foreign Minister Adel bin Ahmed Al-Jubeir at conference in Brussels

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia will provide an additional $100 million of humanitarian aid to alleviate the suffering of the people of Syria, through the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center.

The announcement of the latest aid package was made by Minister of Foreign Affairs Adel bin Ahmed Al-Jubeir on April 25 at an international conference on the future of Syria and the region, held in the Belgian capital Brussels. He pointed out that the meeting comes after the suspected chemical attack in the city of Douma, in eastern Ghouta, which killed dozens of civilians, including women and children.

“The world is facing a regime allied with terrorist militias who believe that spreading atrocities and committing crimes will bring victory to it, and that war crimes are bearing fruit,” said Al-Jubeir. “In addition to bombing civilians with explosive barrels, the policies of starvation and siege, ethnic and sectarian cleansing, and the demographic change of Syrian cities and towns, its use of chemical weapons have shocked the entire world.”

He said that the only acceptable solution to the Syrian crisis is a peaceful political resolution, and that Saudi Arabia has been working to achieve this since the crisis began, while also working with others to end the continuing human tragedy in the war-torn country.

The Kingdom has played a role in unifying the ranks of the Syrian opposition and encouraging them to speak with one voice, he added. After the Riyadh 1 Conference in 2015, Saudi Arabia hosted the Riyadh 2 conference for the Syrian opposition in November 2017, which succeeded in unifying the factions and establishing a negotiating body to take part in the rounds of talks held since then, earning praise from the United Nations.

The foreign minister also reiterated his country’s support for the efforts of the UN secretary-general’s envoy, Stephan de Mistura, to resume negotiations between all sides of the conflict.

“The Kingdom hopes that the agreements endorsed by the international resolutions on the ceasefire and the delivery of humanitarian aid to its beneficiaries will be implemented throughout Syria, regardless of their ethnic, religious, sectarian or political affiliations, and calls for the speedy release of detainees and abductees and clarifying the situation of those absent,” said Al-Jubeir. “It also renews its demand to punish individuals and institutions for war crimes and to prevent their impunity.”

He added that the worsening humanitarian crisis affecting refugees inside and outside of Syria should add to the urgency of finding a political solution and resuming the negotiating process as soon as possible.

Since the war began, the Kingdom has taken in about two and a half million Syrians and treats them like its own citizens, Al-Jubeir said, providing them with free health care, work and education. Saudi universities and schools have more than 140,000 Syrian students. He added that Saudi Arabia is also supporting and helping to care for of millions of Syrian refugees in Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon, in coordination with the governments of those countries. The humanitarian assistance provided so far totals about $1 billion.