Oxfam has welcomed the generous pledges of $2 billion worth of aid to deal with the crisis in Yemen made today in Geneva. The money will provide 70 per cent of the $2.96 billion UN appeal, which aims to help 13.1 million people out of 22.2 million in need of humanitarian assistance.
The international agency pointed out that while the immediate life saving aid was crucial it needed to be backed up with robust diplomatic efforts to end the fighting and put the country on the path to peace.
Shane Stevenson, Oxfam’s Country Director in Yemen, said: “The millions pledged today will provide a crucial short-term lifeline to prevent Yemenis from slipping from crisis into catastrophe. Lives will be saved if the ports are fully opened, goods are allowed to flow through the country and aid reaches where it is desperately needed.
"Welcome as these pledges are, it is only peace that will bring long-term relief to Yemen. Those offering generous support today need to go further, redoubling diplomatic efforts to end the fighting that is the main cause of so much misery for the Yemeni people.”
Yemeni civil society activist, Safa Murad Rafiq, said: “Thousands of civil servants have still not been paid in over a year, delivering aid remains a challenge, reconstruction needs keep increasing, and an entire generation is being denied education. The international community must come up with a promise of massive support to stabilize and rebuild the country.
"Without it, Yemenis will suffer from increased poverty, even fewer children will attend school, and many more will die from hunger and diseases.”