Yemeni minister tells Al Arabiya: 22 million in need of relief

Houthi militias have cut off all aid sources in Yemen and prevented necessary medicine and food to reach the civilians, one minister in Yemen’s internationally recognized government told Al Arabiya.

Minister of Local Administration and Chairman of the Higher Relief Committee, Abdel-Raqib Fath, talked to Al Arabiya about the humanitarian situation and relief needs inside Yemen and said: “UN reports, not only the legitimate government reports, speak and summarize that 82% of the Yemeni people which means that 22 million Yemeni citizens, in need of different types of relief.”

“We were on our way to establish a decentralized federal Yemen, with a real partnership in authority and wealth. However, the coup forces adopted the ‘either to rule you or kill you’ concept, thus came the war and the tragedy we are suffering from now. The needs emerged and multiplied between urgent food, medicine, curing the wounded, intractable diseases, shelter and livelihood requirements,” he told al Arabiya.

The Arab Coalition’s role in Relief

Fath said that the relief contributions of the Arab Coalition were effective. He praised that the Arab Coalition performs its role in executing Security Council Resolution 2216 which set a clear mechanism to control ships and goods entering Yemen. There was an agreement between the UN and the Yemeni government to establish an inspection and control center in Djibouti, and there are no impediments for any relief or commercial ships arriving Yemen.

He added that there are 17 land, air and sea ports for the arrival of relief inside Yemen, also Saudi Arabia announced that Jazan port would be used as a relief port. The Arab Coalition countries committed to increase the capacity of Hodeidah, Aden, Mokha and Mukalla ports, in order to receive various ships and facilitate the emptying in high efficiency.

Fath said that the fact that the militias were detaining relief aid and practicing violations, in the presence of the Special Envoy of UN Secretary-General in Yemen Martin Griffiths is a challenge and clear disregard by the Houthis to all resolutions and laws, and the UN role in Yemen.

He asserted that this issue had been escalated to the UN Security Council, revealing that the aids are being looted by the coup militias, and that all militias were held responsible for impeding humanitarian action and preventing aid from reaching those who need it.

Fath stated that the King Salman Humanitarian and Relief center played a key and active role in the various types of relief operation. Till February 2018 the Center had provided 203 multi-purpose relief programs and projects. It also had an active role in breaking the siege of Taiz through the aerial landing of medicines and food, and delivered 220 tons of relief and therapeutic aid to Saada governorate.

Ministry of Local Administration role in the liberated areas

The Ministry of Local Administration performs relief operations, through the Ministry’s representatives in the governorates. Real partnerships have been established between the Ministry, local authorities and civil society organizations working in the relief field, by implementing relief projects and emergency programs. As well as implementing small local developmental projects that helps to facilitate work related to people’s life on short and mid-term and enhance the stability in the governorates. We were also able to fund these projects through multiple relief agencies.


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