Political Analysis

Minister of Planning: Ceasing Aid Is an Opportunity for Iran to Fill the Gap

National Yemen

friends of Yemen meeting

By NY Staff

Many of the donor countries, including the Gulf States, have hesitated to meet their financial obligations to help Yemen because of the unstable security and political situation. “According to the Minister of Planning and International Cooperation,” Mohammed al-Maitami said, “There are concerns among donors after the Houthis took control of Sana’a.”

Al-Maitami pointed out that the Friends of Yemen, particularly Saudi Arabia, are committed to provid more support to Yemen. “The Gulf States and a number of donor countries are watching the political and security situation in Yemen to make sure that the resources reach the target Yemeni population who will benefit from this assistance or not.”

The Minister’s statement refers to the concern in the Gulf of the military gains made by the Houthis, especially after taking control of Sana’a. The Houthis are facing charges of receiving financial and military support from Iran, which has tense relations with the Gulf States, especially Saudi Arabia.

Al-Maitami warned that if such assistance were stopped, it would leave others the opportunity to fill the gap, such as Iran.

The total donor pledges are about $10 billion. The Yemeni government has decided to allocate approximately 80% of it for infrastructure projects, especially roads, electricity, and health.

The Saudi Ambassador in Sana’a, Mohammed Al Jaber, has stressed his country’s commitment to providing aid to Yemen. He announced the transfer of food aid to Yemen by $54 million, benefitting 250,000 of the poorest Yemeni citizens. However, it is not known when it will begin distributing.

The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) aid is about 55% of the total aid to Yemen, which is $4.41 billion, $3.25 billion of which is from Saudi Arabia.

According to a report about the commitments and reforms, Gulf aid stopped between January and May 2014, reaching only 0.3%. The report also said that the aid received by Yemen until now constitutes only about 31% from Saudi Arabia and 30% from other country commitments, while nothing was pldged by the United Arab Emirates.