UAE flies medical aid to African countries in fight against coronavirus spread

The aid plane to Sierra Leone carried seven metric tons of medical supplies. (WAM)
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Updated 11 May 2020

UAE flies medical aid to African countries in fight against coronavirus spread

  • The UAE sent a medical aid plane to Niger and another to Mali that contain six metric tons of medical supplies
  • A Kuwaiti military aircraft shipped out medical supplies from China

DUBAI: The UAE sent aid planes to Sierra Leone, Niger and Mali on Sunday to help countries  fight the coronavirus outbreak in the region.
The aid included seven tons of medical supplies for about 7,000 medical professionals working in Sierra Leone,, state news agency WAM reported.
"The UAE is committed to assisting its partners throughout Africa in their relentless fight against COVID-19. Today’s provision of aid will boost medical professionals’ ability to combat this virus with the necessary protection and equipment to ensure their safety," Charge d'Affaires of the UAE Embassy in Senegal Omar Al-Meheiri said.
The UAE also sent  aid to Niger and Mali that c including six metric tons of medical supplies to help 6,000 professionals in each country.
"Aid to Niger comes as part of the UAE’s efforts to ensure that medical professionals throughout Africa, especially those in the Sahel region, have access to the necessary personal protective equipment to enable their critical work on the frontlines of fighting COVID-19," Charge d'Affaires of the UAE Embassy in Chad Amer Al-Menhali said.
"Mali is an important partner to the UAE in efforts to strengthen the fight against COVID-19 throughout Africa. Today’s delivery of medical aid to Mali will help protect medical workers who are leading the campaign against the virus’ spread," UAE Ambassador to Algeria and Non-Resident Ambassador to Mali Yousef Saif Al-Ali said.
So far the UAE has sent more than 479 tons of aid to more than 44 countries, benefitting nearly 479,000 medical professionals.
Meanwhile, a Kuwaiti military aircraft flew medical supplies from China to support the country’s fight against the pandemic, state news agency KUNA reported.
Kuwait’s Ambassador to China Sameeh Hayat said today’s aid plane was the 10th and that each shipment carries about 50 to 55 tons of medical supplies. He added that this trip came as part of a series of efforts done by the Ministry of Defense in coordination with the health ministry.

Libya’s GNA govt detains 35 Egyptian fishermen

Updated 12 August 2020

Libya’s GNA govt detains 35 Egyptian fishermen

  • The GNA is still holding the fishermen without a clear accusation to justify their detention

CAIRO: The fate of at least 35 Egyptian fishermen hangs in the balance after they were arrested by the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA) on Nov. 2 last year.  

The families of the fishermen have appealed to the Egyptian government to step up their efforts to secure their freedom as Cairo has been working on their release since November.

Little is known about the fate of the fishermen in Libya other than their location, after it was leaked to Egyptian authorities that they were held in the Turmina Prison, which is affiliated with the GNA.

The head of the Fishermen’s Syndicate in Kafr El-Sheikh, Ahmed Nassar, said they had not been able to communicate with the fishermen since last November and after their disappearance they came to learn that the GNA authorities had detained them.

The GNA is still holding the fishermen without a clear accusation to justify their detention. Nassar said that the fishermen were not fishing in Libyan territory without a permit.

Nassar explained that the fishermen were working on Libyan boats. Alongside them were a number of colleagues working on boats that belong to the Al-Wefaq government. They were not approached by anyone unlike their detained colleagues who were arrested and sent to prison without being charged with any crime.

The Fishermen’s Syndicate chief said that people had called on the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs as well as the government, and the consular section had also been contacted about the matter.

Many of the detained fishermen come from Kafr El-Sheikh, while others come from Abu Qir in the governorate of Alexandria.

The fishermen had been supporting families of up to eight members.

Egyptian authorities say they are exerting great efforts to bring the fishermen back safely, while the fishermen’s families continue to demand safety and justice for the men.