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WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) – member of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs – joined a bipartisan group of senators in calling on Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman to fulfill the Kingdom’s $750 million commitment to the United Nations to help fund critical programs aimed at alleviating the humanitarian crisis in Yemen.

In the letter, the senators warned that 5 million people, in a country with the largest cholera outbreak in modern history, will lose access to clean water – leading to thousands of deaths if the funding is not received by the end of October.

“In 2019, Saudi Arabia was again one of the largest committed donors to respond to the UN humanitarian appeal. However, we are concerned that so far your government has provided only a small share of its promised $750 million commitment,” the members wrote. “The UN was counting on this funding; without it, critical programs to provide vaccinations, food assistance, fuel and medicine are all being shut down. If funding is not received by the end of October, 5 million people – in a country facing the largest cholera outbreak in modern history – will lose access to clean water.”

“As you know, Yemen is currently the world’s largest humanitarian crisis and we have a shared obligation to prevent the suffering and death of innocent civilians who bear the consequences of an ongoing civil war,” the members continued.

Joining Sen. Moran in sending the letter were U.S. Senators Todd Young (R-Ind.), Chris Murphy (D-Del.), Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Cory Booker (D-N.J.).

The full text of the letter can be found here and below:

His Royal Highness
Mohammad bin Salman bin Abdulziz Al Saud
Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,
Riyadh

Your Royal Highness,

We are writing today regarding the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Yemen and current funding shortfalls facing the relief effort. As members who follow developments in Yemen closely, we are deeply appreciative of the contributions the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has made to multilateral efforts to alleviate the humanitarian crisis. Unfortunately, the international community now faces an urgent crisis as vital programs implemented by the UN and its humanitarian partners have begun to shut down due to the lack of delivery on funding commitments for 2019. We therefore ask that you help ensure that Saudi Arabia fulfills its $750 million commitment to the 2019 United Nations humanitarian appeal, and help prevent the deaths of thousands of innocent men, women and children.

We recognize that Saudi Arabia has been one of the top contributors to humanitarian efforts in Yemen. Furthermore, the $930 million in block funding provided by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates in 2018 allowed the United Nations to prevent a widespread cholera outbreak and stave off a famine. These contributions saved countless numbers of lives.

In 2019, Saudi Arabia was again one of the largest committed donors to respond to the UN humanitarian appeal. However, we are concerned that so far your government has provided only a small share of its promised $750 million commitment. The UN was counting on this funding; without it, critical programs to provide vaccinations, food assistance, fuel and medicine are all being shut down. If funding is not received by the end of October, 5 million people – in a country facing the largest cholera outbreak in modern history – will lose access to clean water.

We share your concern with reports of aid diversion by Houthi militants, and have been reassured by the UN’s actions to halt programs where aid is found to be not going to the intended recipients. We are unaware of any reasons for further delay. As you know, Yemen is currently the world’s largest humanitarian crisis and we have a shared obligation to prevent the suffering and death of innocent civilians who bear the consequences of an ongoing civil war. 

Thank you for your attention to this important issue. We look forward to working with you to alleviate the humanitarian crisis in Yemen. 
 

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