Ramadan is usually a time for fasting, prayer and renewal of religious devotion. For some local Muslims, this year’s Ramadan will also be a time to organize and send some relief to those facing hunger and famine. From Toronto to Ottawa and Calgary, members of the International Development and Relief Foundation (IDRF) are teaming up with students and Muslim volunteers to prepare and pack about 1,500 supply kits to be delivered to thousands of families in Somalia.
The World Food Programme last week said nearly two million people were living on the brink of famine in the remote region, which has been devastated by Boko Haram violence since 2009. Boko Haram's Islamist insurgency has killed at least 20,000 people in northeast Nigeria and forced millions of others from their homes. Lack of security, plus restrictions on travel and trade, have hit agriculture hard, led to food shortages and driven up prices. The UN says Nigeria needs $1.05 billion this year to fund vital humanitarian projects including food, clean water and sanitation.
President Donald Trump's U.N. ambassador called Monday for the U.N. and aid agencies to shift focus in how they support Syrians in need by boosting support for roads, schools and hospitals in neighboring countries that have been overwhelmed by millions of refugees. Speaking in Jordan, host to some 660,000 Syrian refugees, Nikki Haley argued that lack of coordination among aid agencies has led duplicated efforts and inefficiencies after seven years of civil war in the Arab country.
The Saudi foreign ministry published an infographic that shows the size of aid which the Saudi kingdom has provided to Yemen since April 2015 until April 2017. Saudi Arabia has provided $8.2 billion during this phase. The amount has been divided on different sectors. The development sector received the biggest share worth $2.9 billion while aid to the legitimate Yemeni government was worth $2.2 billion.
Ireland has announced €6 million in humanitarian aid to Iraq and Yemen which are currently raged by fierce wars which has resulted in a large-scale displacement of civilians. From the fund, €2m is being given to the Iraq Humanitarian Pooled Fund in response to the needs of almost 11 million Iraqi people affected by the violence linked to Islamic State (IS), and the counter-insurgency operation launched by the Iraqi government, Irish media reported.
Israeli emergency teams have deployed to Peru to support affected communities following floods and mudslides that have eviscerated much of the country’s infrastructure. The Peruvian government said it needed international aid to help hundreds of thousands of people displaced by flash floods and landslides. IsraAID deployed a team to support affected communities in impoverished and remote areas.
After defeating Fascism in World War II, Washington channeled billions of dollars into the war-torn nations of Europe and Japan, helping transform them into economic success stories and vital democratic allies. That’s a lesson worth remembering as President Trump tries to slash the State Department and its foreign aid programs by about 30 percent in the proposed budget for the next fiscal year, while raising Pentagon spending by 10 percent.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday confirmed that his country had launched an aid campaign to help four East African countries currently hit by an acute drought. According to Erdogan, Turkey’s effort was aimed at helping Kenya, Ethiopia, South Sudan, Somalia and Yemen, all of who are "at risk of suffering a major humanitarian crisis." "We cannot afford to turn a blind eye to requests for help from those countries where the drought-related hunger has reached critical levels," he said in a tweet.