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Qatar aids Yemen with $20 million

April 5, 2018 at 3:02 pm

Qatar’s Fund for Development (QFFD) has pledged to support a UN 2018 Yemen Humanitarian Response Plan, the Gulf Times reported today.

At a meeting held in Geneva this week, Antonio Guterres, UN Secretary-General called on states to fund a $3 billion aid package for Yemen. The Qatari fund will contribute towards supporting basic sectors in health, water, food security and protection.

The United Kingdom announced earlier this week that it also intends to contribute some $239 million to the aid package. Guterres urged all parties to the conflict to work with the new British UN special envoy to Yemen to find peace.

The Yemen civil war erupted in 2014 when the Houthis overtook control of the capital Sana’a. Back then, the internationally recognised president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi requested a Saudi-led coalition of Arab states launch an air war campaign to neutralise territorial threats by the Houthis. The Saudi-led coalition officially began its operations in March 2015, while more than 10,000 Yemenis have been killed in the conflict according to the UN.

Saudi Arabia expelled Qatar from the coalition in Yemen following a Gulf rift in June last year. Saudi Arabia alongside the United Arab Emirates and other countries accused Qatar of supporting extremism and terrorism. Qatar categorically denied the allegations as baseless.

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Qatar maintains that it was “obligated” to join the civil conflict in Yemen, and despite allegations by the quartet over the Gulf rift, Doha maintains that it was “defending the border of Saudi,” according to Khalid Bin Mohammad Al-Attiyah, Qatar’s defence minister.

Adding to Qatar’s dismissal, the United Arab Emirate’s foreign affairs minister, Anwar Gargash, late last year accused Qatar of mediating between the Houthis and forces loyal to late president Ali Abdullah Saleh. Qatar denied the claims, though welcomed any form of mediation to end the war.

Qatar is no stranger to peace negotiations; it has assisted conflicts spanning Afghanistan, Sudan and Lebanon. Doha even attempted to form a peace deal back in 2004 between parties in Yemen, as opposed to continuing the conflict.

The Yemen civil war continues without any viable peace process in sight. Three years on, ballistic missiles are being executed into Saudi Arabia, air strikes pound densely populated areas and civilians are caught in the middle, enduring cholera, bird flu and starvation.