KSRelief calls for UN probe into ‘serious reports’ of Yemen aid agency corruption

Men deliver aid donations from donors, in Aslam, Hajjah, Yemen. (File/AP)
Updated 09 August 2019

KSRelief calls for UN probe into ‘serious reports’ of Yemen aid agency corruption

  • Senior KSRelief officials have demanded an urgent investigation following allegations of wrongdoing brought to their attention by a number of international news organizations
  • “While the center values its strong strategic partnerships with the UN and its agencies, there are clearly stated mechanisms in its contracts with humanitarian partners which prohibit the exploitation of aid,” a statement said

RIYADH: The King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSRelief) has called for a full-scale probe into “serious reports” of corruption in UN agencies delivering vital aid to war-torn Yemen.
Senior KSRelief officials have demanded an urgent investigation following allegations of wrongdoing brought to their attention by a number of international news organizations.
A statement, issued by KSRelief’s media center, said: “The KSRelief called upon the United Nations aid agencies to review and enforce accurate, credible, neutral and transparent monitoring mechanisms for their humanitarian work in Yemen to prevent any abuse or exploitation of humanitarian aid.
“KSRelief officials were recently briefed on serious reports from some international news agencies alleging the existence of corruption in some UN agencies working in Yemen. KSRelief relies heavily on these agencies to deliver urgent humanitarian assistance to Yemenis in desperate need of help.”
It added: “While the center values its strong strategic partnerships with the UN and its agencies, there are clearly stated mechanisms in its contracts with humanitarian partners which prohibit the exploitation of aid by individuals or groups working or affiliated with the UN or international organizations for any individual or other interests.”
The KSRelief statement noted that aid contracts required the immediate disclosure of any incident of irregularity or corruption, and that KSRelief had the right to participate in any investigation into such incidents.
The center was also entitled to review all partner agreements to ensure compliance with transparent monitoring and implementation procedures.
“Therefore, the KSRelief calls upon the UN and its humanitarian agencies to immediately begin transparent investigations into these incidents, and to disclose any suspicion of the involvement of their staff members in corruption, abuses or complicity with any party with regards to the allocation of humanitarian grants and aid provided by Saudi Arabia,” said the statement.
“Moreover, the KSRelief emphasizes the importance of its valuable partnerships with the UN agencies in carrying out its mission to alleviate the suffering of all in need, and calls upon the UN and its humanitarian agencies to immediately review their monitoring, evaluation and reporting mechanisms to ensure impartiality and transparency in aid delivery.”


Tunisia to repatriate extremists’ children from Libya

Updated 23 January 2020

Tunisia to repatriate extremists’ children from Libya

  • Six Tunisian children, aged three to 12 years old, along with a dozen others of different nationalities, had for three years been cared for by a charity in Misrata

TRIPOLI: A Tunisian delegation traveled Thursday to Libya’s third city Misrata to repatriate children of extremists killed in 2016 in the North African country, the Libyan Red Crescent said.
Six Tunisian children, aged three to 12 years old, along with a dozen others of different nationalities, had for three years been cared for by the charity in Misrata, east of the capital Tripoli.
They are the children of extremists who were killed in 2016 in the coastal Libyan city of Sirte, a former stronghold the Daesh group.
The Red Crescent said they are expected to be repatriated on Thursday.
A year ago, Tunisian forensic police took DNA samples from the children to confirm their nationality before evacuating them out of Libya.
The pace of the procedure was criticized by NGOs, including Human Rights Watch, which accused Tunisian officials of “dragging their feet” on efforts to repatriate children of Daesh members.
In recent years, Tunisia has been one of the key sources of fighters who headed to conflicts around the world to join ranks with extremist groups.
In 2015, the United Nations said that some 5,000 Tunisians had flocked mainly to Syria and Libya to join the Daesh, while authorities in Tunis gave a lower figure of 3,000.
Many Tunisian fighters who went to Libya joined Daesh in Sirte, which was seized in December 2016 by forces allied to the Tripoli-based UN-recognized Government of National Accord after months of heavy fighting.