Saudi Arabia and UAE Offers $200 Million in Aid to Yemen for Ramadan
On Monday, the UAE stated that the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia, who jointly run an Arab coalition fighting Iran-affiliated Houthi rebels in Yemen, would be providing $200 million in aid to the nation for use during the Muslim’s holy month of Ramadan.
The Saudis and Emiratis are working with humanitarian groups to dispense the aid within areas hold and guarded by both sides in the four-year battle. UAE Minister of State for International Cooperation, Reem al-Hashimy informed reporters in Abu Dhabi that the aid is part of a $500 million joint food aid program proclaimed in November.
The UAE plays a crucial role in Yemen’s battle as part of a Saudi-led military allied group that mediated in 2015 against the Houthi movement to bring back the internationally acknowledged government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi.
The UAE presented $5.41 billion between April 2015 and December 2018 to back emergency food aid, energy supply, and health services.
Among international organizations, the important beneficiary was the U.N. World Food Program (WFP), received $287 million in aid from the UAE. During the month of Ramadan, which this year starts from early May, devout Muslims fast during daylight hours.
Yemen’s war has killed tens of thousands of people – some of them from coalition air attacks – and driven 10 million to the verge of famine. The Arabian Peninsula nation is also suffering its third major outbreak of cholera since the conflict started.
In December, the conflicting parties reached a deal at U.N.-led peace debate for a truce and troop pullout from the Red Sea port of Hodeidah, Yemen’s lifeline for fuel and food.
The ceasefire has largely held but the pullout has stalled due to mistrust among the parties, calling into question the U.N. goal of further discussions to agree a framework for political discussions to end the war.