Qatar has pledged $12mn in humanitarian aid in the Horn of Africa, noting that millions of people in this region are facing the threat of starvation and enormous challenges caused by the deteriorating conditions due to drought, food insecurity and malnutrition.
This came in a speech delivered by HE Assistant Foreign Minister for Regional Affairs Dr Mohamed bin Abdulaziz bin Saleh al-Khulaifi at the High Level Side Event: Responding to the Urgent Humanitarian Needs in the Horn of Africa.
The event was hosted by Qatar alongside Italy, the United States and the United Kingdom, in co-operation with the United Nations Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), on the sidelines of the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.
In his speech HE al-Khulaifi said that the collapsed situation and the great humanitarian needs in the Horn of Africa require continuous commitment and urgent measures from the international community to reach those in dire need of aid, reduce risks, and enhance the resilience of the population; adding that this event constitutes an important opportunity to reaffirm unwavering support for the countries of the Horn of Africa as they struggle to meet its basic needs.
He underlined that Qatar has been keen to co-operate with the international community in order to address humanitarian challenges, affirming that Qatar gives top priority to providing humanitarian and development assistance, especially in areas of greatest need.
He explained that this approach constitutes an essential pillar of Qatar’s policy, pointing in this regard to its leading role in the field of providing humanitarian assistance, and undertaking many initiatives and efforts in this field, based on its moral responsibilities and obligations.
HE al-Khulaifi expressed Qatar’s pride in being one of the most prominent countries that support the United Nations in many fields, pointing to the pledge of Qatar Fund for Development (QFFD) and its partners in 2021 to finance sustainable development and humanitarian relief, which has transformed the lives of people in 47 countries around the world, including countries of the Horn of Africa.
In addition, QFFD, in co-operation with Qatar Red Crescent, has started to support the health, water, sanitation and hygiene sectors in Somalia for two years. In co-operation with a number of institutions in Qatar, QFFD is also financing and implementing many development projects in different sectors in Somalia, including infrastructure, education and economic empowerment, he added.
HE al-Khulaifi also expressed Qatar’s pride in hosting the second part of the 5th United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC5) from March 5 to 9, 2023; stressing the importance of strengthening the capacity of the least developed countries to face complex and unexpected emergencies, such as the ongoing crises in the Horn of Africa.
He considered the conference an important opportunity to bring about a transformational change in the lives of those who live in the most vulnerable countries.
HE the Assistant Foreign Minister for Regional Affairs underlined that solidarity and multilateral action have become more important than ever; adding that Qatar will remain deeply committed to harmonious humanitarian work, and it has a priority to maintain its great contribution to alleviating human suffering, especially for the most vulnerable groups.
He expressed Qatar’s deep gratitude to all humanitarian workers who continue to work tirelessly to provide urgent humanitarian assistance to millions of people around the world, stressing that their commendable efforts represent an inspiration to everyone.