Saudi-UAE $200m pledge for Yemen wins UN praise

Those responsible for these abuses must be held accountable, Dr. Abdullah Al-Rabeeah said. (SPA)
Updated 19 April 2019
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Saudi-UAE $200m pledge for Yemen wins UN praise

  • Transgressions by Houthi militia will not stop us from supporting Yemen, says aid Saudi chief

UNITED NATIONS: The UN Security Council has commended Saudi Arabia and the UAE after the two countries pledged $200 million in humanitarian relief assistance for Yemenis for Ramadan.

Council members voiced their concern that agreements between the Yemeni government and Houthis in Stockholm four months ago were yet to be implemented and called for their immediate implementation.

In a press statement, the council affirmed its support for the Stockholm agreement, and its backing for the special envoy of the secretary-general to Yemen and the chairman of the Coordinating Committee for Redeployment.

The relief assistance has been 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 Houthi militia will not stop us from supporting Yemen, especially with the holy month of Ramadan upon us,” said Dr. Abdullah Al-Rabeeah, supervisor general of the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSRelief).

“We must recognize that the Saudi-led coalition forces (supporting Yemen’s internationally recognized government) ensure the assistance reaches 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,” he said.

Those responsible for these abuses must be held accountable, Al-Rabeeah added.
 


Saudi Arabia stresses need for enhanced cooperation in global fight against terrorism

Updated 6 min 12 sec ago
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Saudi Arabia stresses need for enhanced cooperation in global fight against terrorism

  • No effort is being spared in the fight against terrorism in the Kingdom
  • A number of initiatives have been developed to address the problem of returning terrorist fighters

JEDDAH: The fight against terrorism remains a global priority, Saudi Arabia said on Thursday, as the Kingdom emphasized the need for the international community to work together to eradicate the threat it poses.

The comments were included in a speech delivered by the Saudi delegation at the 28th session of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice in Geneva. Led by Interior Ministry adviser Abdullah Al-Ansari, the delegates presented a review of the Kingdom’s efforts in the realms of crime prevention and criminal justice. They highlighted the fact that no effort is being spared in the fight against terrorism, which is a high priority for the nation.

The Saudis also stressed the need for continued international cooperation to defeat terrorism, and said that the Kingdom has ratified most of the international measured designed to combat the threat. The country has also implemented a number of anti-terror measures, including: the establishment of a Presidency of State Security to address security challenges, in particular those posed by terrorism and its financing; the founding of a National Cybersecurity Authority to address cyber threats; and the amendment of counterterrorism laws.

The commission heard that the Kingdom’s security services had uncovered and disrupted active terrorist cells across the country. In addition, a number of initiatives have been developed to address the problem of returning terrorist fighters. These include the Terrorist Financing Targeting Center, the members of which includes the GCC states, and which is jointly led by Saudi Arabia and the United States. It maintains strict control over the banking sector, ensures the proper organization of the charitable sector, and imposes sanctions on those found guilty of financing terrorism.

The delegation pointed out that the Kingdom continues to lay the foundations for a long-term strategy to defeat extremism. This includes the founding of the Global Center for Combating Extremist Ideology, and the expansion of anti-extremism programs through the King Abdul Aziz Center for National Dialogue to address the growing threat of radicalization and recruitment of young people by armed militias such as Daesh.

At the international level, the Kingdom has pledged $100 million to support the G5 Sahel counterterrorism task force in West Africa, and is a founding member of the Global Counterterrorism Forum. In addition, Saudi experts participate in joint military programs targeting terrorism around the world.

The country also hosted a meeting of the Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition to address the ideological, financial, military and media aspects of the fight against terrorism, and the Ministry of Interior has implemented numerous judicial and legal assistance requests to assist in the battle.

A number of draft resolutions arose from the session, the most important of which included: technical assistance for the implementation of international counterterrorism conventions; combating the online sexual exploitation and abuse of children; strengthening technical assistance and international cooperation to combat cybercrime; and the adoption of preparations for the 14th UN Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice in April 2020 in Kyoto, Japan. During discussions about these resolutions, most of the amendments suggested by the Kingdom were adopted to strengthen international cooperation.

The Saudi delegates also held meetings with officials from the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, including officials from the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, and the Bureau of Counterterrorism. They discussed ways to enhance cooperation and enhance the capability of law-enforcement officers to combat such crimes.