Saudi Arabia, UAE giving $200m in aid to Yemen for Ramadan

Dr. Abdullah Al-Rabeeah, KSRelief supervisor general, vows to continue relief works despite Houthi ‘transgressions.’ AN photo
Updated 09 April 2019

Saudi Arabia, UAE giving $200m in aid to Yemen for Ramadan

  • Iranian-backed Houthis using ‘starvation as political tool’
  • The funding is allocated to UN partners: World Food Programme, UNICEF and WHO

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia and the UAE will allocate $200 million as urgent humanitarian assistance to the people of Yemen, the supervisor general of the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSRelief) said on Monday.

The assistance comes a few weeks before Ramadan, and will enable Yemenis to observe the holy fasting month, Dr. Abdullah Al-Rabeeah added.

“Every year for Ramadan, we have large programs for iftar (breaking the fast), especially in Yemen and for all countries in need,” he said.

The funding is allocated to UN partners: $140 million to the World Food Programme, $40 million to UNICEF to address sanitation issues and malnutrition among children and mothers, and $20 million to the World Health Organization to tackle cholera and provide intravenous feeding fluids.

“Transgressions” by the Houthi militia “will not stop us from supporting Yemen, especially with the holy month of Ramadan upon us,” Al-Rabeeah said.

“We were able to contain cholera before, but now we face two problems: The rainy season, and its spread in places where the Houthi militia is prevalent,” he added.

“We’re serious about reaching all parts of Yemen to eliminate this disease (cholera) and any (others) that the Yemeni people face,” he said.

“We must recognize that the Saudi-led coalition forces (supporting Yemen’s internationally recognized government) make sure the assistance reaches through ports or land. However, when the aid reaches militia-controlled regions, there are obstacles preventing beneficiaries from gaining proper access to humanitarian aid. That starvation method is a political tool that the Houthis use to control Yemen.” Al-Rabeeah said there must be accountability for these abuses.


Former Egyptian president Morsi buried in Cairo: lawyer

Updated 46 min 18 sec ago

Former Egyptian president Morsi buried in Cairo: lawyer

  • Morsi, was suffering from a benign tumor, had continuous medical attention, says state TV
  • The former president died aged 67

CAIRO: Egypt’s first democratically elected president Mohammed Morsi was buried on Tuesday in eastern Cairo, one of his lawyers said, a day after he collapsed in court and died.

“He was buried in Medinat Nasr, in eastern Cairo, with his family present. The funeral prayer was said in Tora prison hospital” where he was declared dead on Monday, his lawyer Abdel Moneim Abdel Maksoud said.

Egyptian state television announced that Morsi, 67, who was ousted by the military on July 3, 2013, had been attending a court session at his trial on charges of espionage and links with the Palestinian militant group Hamas.

It was reported that he collapsed in the courtroom inside a glass cage he and others had been sharing, before his body was transferred to a local hospital.

Morsi died from a sudden heart attack, state television reported early on Tuesday, citing a medical source. The source said the former president, who was suffering from a benign tumor, had continuous medical attention.

Attorney-General Nabil Sadiq issued a statement saying: “The accused, Mohammed Morsi, in the presence of the other defendants inside the cage, fell unconscious, where he was immediately transferred to the hospital.

“The preliminary medical report stated that by external medical examination they found no pulse, no breathing, and his eyes were unresponsive to light. He died at 4:50 p.m. and no apparent injuries to the body were found.”

Sadiq added he had ordered the transfer of teams from the Supreme State Security Prosecution Office and the Southern Cairo Prosecution Office to conduct an investigation into Morsi’s death, and to examine surveillance footage from the courtroom and collect witness testimonies.

He also ordered that a senior forensic committee headed by the chief medical officer and the director of forensic medicine to prepare a forensic report on the cause of death.

Various outlets say that a state of high alert has been issued by the military and the Ministry of the Interior throughout the country following the news, for fear of riots or activity by the Muslim Brotherhood, in which Morsi was a prominent figure.

Morsi became president in June 2012 after the first democratic elections in the country following the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak on Jan. 25, 2011. He was Egypt’s fifth president.

He was born to a family of farmers on Aug. 20, 1951, in the village of Al-Adwa in Sharkia province. He married in 1978 and leaves behind his wife, five children and three grandchildren.

Following his deposition and arrest, Morsi was sentenced to 20 years imprisonment on Oct. 22, 2016, over bloody clashes that took place on Dec. 5, 2012 in front of the presidential palace in Cairo, between supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood and opponents of Morsi rejecting a constitutional declaration issued in November of that year.

Other sentences meant his total incarceration could have been up to 48 years, with the ongoing espionage case potentially carrying a further maximum sentence of 25 years.

In Istanbul on Tuesday, hundreds of Muslim Brotherhood supporters took to the streets, mourning former Egyptian president Mohamed Mursi and some chanting slogans blaming Cairo authorities for his death.

* With AFP