Saudi Arabia has airlifted critical supplies to Yemen to assist in the country’s fight against the coronavirus outbreak.
Announcing details of the airlift, the World Health Organisation (WHO) thanked the Kingdom in a tweet.
Special thanks to Saudi Arabia who airlifted critical @WHO #COVID19 supplies to #Yemen, including personal protective items for health workers & lab screening tests for Aden & Sana’a. The shipment also incl. trauma meds & supplies to support the ongoing response to the crisis. pic.twitter.com/g9zzorMAkv
— WHO Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean (@WHOEMRO) March 23, 2020
The airlift came a day after The King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre (KSRelief) held a meeting with representatives from WHO to assess the health needs of the war-torn country as it confronts the coronavirus crisis.
Saudi sources reported that KSRelief’s ability to help Yemen face the virus by providing medicine, medical devices and equipment, and preventive supplies by land, sea and air, were discussed in the meeting.
With a health system that has been shattered by five years of war, led by the Saudis, and a population weakened and malnourished in what the UN has described as the worst humanitarian crisis of our time, the coronavirus outbreak has the potential to wreak havoc and devastation if it takes hold.
Riyadh’s closure of the only border crossing with Yemen at the beginning of this month as a precautionary measure to prevent the spread of the coronavirus is likely to have left Sana’a short on essential supplies.