x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Qatar pledges $500m in aid to Darfur

Qatar has promised more than Dh1.8 billion in aid to rebuild Sudan's war-ravaged western region of Darfur.

DOHA // Qatar promised more than Dh1.8 billion in aid to rebuild Sudan's war-ravaged western region of Darfur, a minister said today.

"Qatar has pledged an amount of US$500 million as grants and contributions for rebuilding Darfur," said the minister of state for cabinet affairs, Ahmed bin Abdullah Al Mahmud.

In February 2010, Qatar had promised to establish a bank with a capital of US$1bn (Dh3.67bn) to develop Darfur.

Britain on Sunday pledged an annual sum of at least £11m (Dh61.8m) for Darfur over the next three years to help communities to grow food and to boost skills for employment.

The latest announcement came as delegates met in Doha for a second day for a conference aimed at endorsing a strategy to rebuild Darfur, where atrocities against civilians in a decade-long conflict shocked the world.

The conference, which drew condemnation from rebel groups still fighting the regime, was agreed under a July 2011 peace deal that Khartoum signed in the Qatari capital with an alliance of rebel splinter groups.

It seeks support for the six-year, US$7.2bn strategy to move Darfur away from food handouts and other emergency aid, and lay the foundation for lasting development through improved infrastructure.