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Yemen Hopes Donors will Fulfill Aid Pledges

National Yemen

Yemen Hopes Donors will Fulfill Aid Pledges

Yemen hopes that donor countries that meet today will honor their pledges of $7.8 billion to the country, of which nearly a quarter has been paid, the international cooperation minister said Tuesday.

The country’s delegation to a meeting of the “Friends of Yemen,” scheduled on the margin of the U.N. General Assembly meeting today Wednesday Sep 25th,2013, “will ask for the support of donors for the stage that follows the national dialogue,” Mohammed Saadi said.

The national dialogue is aimed at drafting a new constitution and prepare for elections in February 2014.

Yemen has agreed with donors over a list of projects which amount to 85 percent of total pledges, said Saadi, who also holds the planning portfolio.

But he pointed out that “only 24 percent (of pledges) have been released for projects that are being implemented.”

Oil-rich Saudi Arabia came at the top of countries that have met their commitments, he said. Part of its donation was to support the local currency, while other amounts were set aside for roads and electricity projects.

Earlier this month, the United Nations urged the international community, especially Gulf countries, to increase aid to impoverished Yemen, saying more than 10 million people in the country are hungry.

“People need food, water, education and healthcare. But they also want to know that there is investment to secure their future. We urgently need more funding to help those in need,” said U.N. humanitarian chief Valerie Amos.