Riyadh and UN fail to raise $ 2.4 billion to help Yemen deal with Covid-19

Saudi Arabia launched a virtual donor conference on Tuesday, hoping to raise more than € 2.4 billion for Yemen. The collection has reached only 1.35 billion. The country, in war for five years, is in a “race against time” ahead of the coronavirus crisis.

They did not harvest half. A donor conference, organized by Saudi Arabia and the UN, was held on Tuesday, June 2, in a virtual manner. The goal: raise $ 2.4 billion [soit 2,14 milliards d’euros] international humanitarian aid, while humanitarian organizations are concerned about the rapid spread of the virus in Yemen after more than half a decade of war.

The conference ended when pledges totaled only $ 1.35 billion.

“A total of $ 1.35 billion [environ 1,2milliard d’euros]Promises have been announced from a wide range of donors for the humanitarian response to Yemen, including the fight against Covid-19, “a UN spokesman told reporters.

Riyadh has advanced $ 500 million [448 millions d’euros]. Britain promised 201 million [180 millions d’euros], while Germany offered 140 million [125,5millions].

“A race against time”

In a statement, the Saudi government estimated that “$ 2.3 billion [2 milliards d’euros]is needed to cover urgent needs in Yemen in several sectors, including medical assistance, food and shelter. “

UN Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Mark Lowcock talked about the figure of $ 2.4 billion, of which $ 180 million was spent in the fight against Covid-19.

Since March 2015, Saudi Arabia has intervened in Yemen at the head of a military coalition supporting the Yemeni government against the Houthi rebels, with the support of Iran. This coalition is accused of several bribes against civilians in Yemen.

Relief workers face a “race against time” to prevent the double crisis in the country from worsening, the poorest on the Arabian Peninsula, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned on Tuesday.

With AFP