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News ID: 89906
Publish Date : 05 May 2021 - 20:31
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WASHINGTON (Dispatches) – A group of U.S. legislators is calling on the Biden administration to help raise $2.5bn in aid for Yemenis suffering amid "the world’s worst humanitarian crisis” caused by a Saudi-led war under the aegis of Washington.
In an open letter on Tuesday, four U.S. senators urged Secretary of State Antony Blinken to provide more aid for Yemen and rally other countries to contribute after a recent United Nations fundraising appeal for the war-torn country fell short.
The UN conference in March sought to raise $3.85bn but only raised $1.35bn. The Biden administration had pledged $19mn in U.S. assistance, far below the "fair share” of $1.2bn that international aid group Oxfam had urged Washington to contribute.
"More than 20 million Yemenis depend on humanitarian assistance to survive and we cannot let them down,” reads the bipartisan letter, signed by Democratic Senators Chris Murphy and Jeanne Shaheen, as well as Republican Senators Jerry Moran and Todd Young.
"Unfortunately, the looming threat of famine has re-emerged. Today, nearly 50,000 people in Yemen are living in famine-like conditions with 5 million more just a step away,” said the legislators, urging Blinken to support calls for a second humanitarian donor conference for Yemen.
Switzerland and Sweden have called for another fundraising conference to fill the $2.5bn shortage.
Saudi Arabia, backed by the U.S. and other regional allies, launched a devastating war on Yemen in March 2015, with the goal of bringing the government of former Yemeni president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi back to power and crushing popular Ansarullah movement.
Yemeni armed forces and allied Popular Committees have, however, gone from strength to strength against the Saudi-led invaders, and left Riyadh and its allies bogged down in the country.
The Saudi-led military aggression has left hundreds of thousands of Yemenis dead, and displaced millions of people. It has also destroyed Yemen’s infrastructure and spread famine and infectious diseases across the country.
The Yemeni Media Union said more than 300 journalists and correspondents have lost their lives as a result of the devastating military campaign Saudi Arabia and a number of its allies have been waging against the Arab country since 2015.
The union, in a statement released on the occasion of World Press Freedom Day, on Monday announced that 337 Yemeni members of the press, including 47 citizen journalists and 290 war correspondents, have been killed in the course of Saudi-led coalition airstrikes on their homes and workplaces within the past six years.
It noted that the Saudi-led coalition has committed 584 violations against Yemeni journalists during the same period, adding that it has deliberately targeted correspondents and media staff over exposing the atrocities, violations and horrific crimes of the Riyadh regime and its allies.
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