RIYADH: Saudi Arabia is the world's biggest supporter of relief work around the world through its humanitarian initiatives, donations and assistance to affected countries either due to wars or natural disasters, an embodiment of the values of humanity and the extension of its humanitarian role in relief without discrimination.
The total assistance provided by the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSRelief) covering 44 countries worldwide amounted to $3.25 billion as of March 8, 2019. These consisted of 996 projects in several areas, including shelters, food security, health, education, water, environmental sanitation, nutrition and community support.
Yemen is the largest recipient of Saudi aid, with 330 projects in various sectors amounting to $1.99 billion, including education, health, water and environmental sanitation, support and coordination of humanitarian operations, food security, early recovery, shelter, non-food items, protection, among others.
Palestine is the second biggest to receive aid from KSRelief with a total of $352.9 million, earmarked for the implementation of 78 projects. Syria came third at $267.1 million dollars for 191 projects, followed by Somalia with $175.37 million for 37 projects.
Pakistan is fifth at $116.6 million to cover 105 projects, followed by Indonesia with $71.25 million for 27 projects.
Iraq received $26.75 million from KSRelief for 13 projects, Lebanon got $24.8 million for 24 projects, Afghanistan got $22.3 million for 32 projects, and Myanmar had $17.5 million for 11 projects.
KSRelief's provided $12.9 million in financial assistance to Sri Lanka, $10.5 million to Nigeria and $9.6 million Tajikistan.
Despite of the great challenges that the center has faced, it was able to reach a global status among the international institutions and bodies working in the field of humanitarian relief work in a short period.
The Kingdom was the first to fund the Yemen Humanitarian Response Plan in 2018, providing $11.88 billion since the beginning of Yemen's crisis sparked by the Houthi coup. It also carried out specific projects, including the rehabilitation project for child soldiers recruited and affected by the war in Yemen, and the "Masam" demining project.
KSRelief also provided 10 international projects with a total cost reaching $94.2 million.
Dr. Abdullah Al-Rabiah, adviser to the Royal Court and KSRelief general supervisor, said in a statement that Saudi aid agency's relief and humanitarian work are in line with Saudi Arabia's Vision 2030.
King Salman has also approved the release of more than SR1.8 billion as Ramadan aid for various beneficiaries.