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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 17 December 2018

UAE launches initiative to help families of Yemen war dead

The Emirati Red Crescent is creating 1,000 opportunities for relatives and disabled people in Aden

A UAE soldier guards a military plane at Aden airport. Reuters.
A UAE soldier guards a military plane at Aden airport. Reuters.

The Emirati Red Crescent is supporting an initiative that aims to create 1,000 opportunities for the families of those killed and wounded in Yemen’s civil war.

The Emirati ambassador in Yemen, Salem Al Ghafli, and Aden Governor Ahmed Salem Rubaiya launched the initiative earlier this week at Kabuta markets in the Al Mansoura district of the southern Yemeni city.

The markets will host traders who sell fish, vegetables and fruits. They were built and equipped by the ERC with an ultimate goal of providing hundreds of business opportunities for relatives of those killed in the three-year-long conflict between pro-government forces and the Iran-backed Houthi rebels, as well as those severely wounded in the conflict.

Engineer Bander Sultan, the project supervisor, told the National that the ERC has visited the site of the project and conducted a feasibility study that has allowed the project to be launched.

"The ERC has been intensifying its humanitarian interventions in Yemen, and later on it started to expand its humanitarian aid focusing on the sustainable development for the people who are in need for such rewarding projects to help them make a living,” said Mr Sultan.

The beneficiaries of the project have signed contracts with the ERC and given ownership contracts. The ERC wrapped up all the requirements of the projects and they are to start business soon.

“The ERC is going to provide the equity capital for the beneficiaries, the beneficiaries are going to be granted funds for a period of six months which will help them to make their start ups and after the six months they have to count on their incomes to continue,” said Mr Sultan. “We are going to keep monitoring that to make sure that the beneficiaries are benefiting from the project.”

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Om Mohammed, a mother of a soldier who was killed in battle with the Houthi militia fighting to liberate Aden in 2016, expressed her high appreciation for such humanitarian efforts exerted by the UAE for the sake of the martyrs families.

“My son died and left six family members, four sons and two daughters in addition to their mother and me, we were feeling sad because we usually feel that we have no supporter after Mohammed's death, his sons were trying to make a living sometimes they go to vegetables market and try to work with the traders but they were humiliated,” she said.

“But today they have their own business and they could make a living with dignity, so we don’t have anything to say just many thanks for my sons in the ERC , many thanks for the leaders of the UAE, our prayers for them all.”

Mohammed Nasr Shatheli, Aden's deputy governor, told The National that the ERC has opened 1,000 doors for those who were living on a tight budget, especially the relatives who felt that the sacrifices of their sons were not wasted.

“The projects which were launched in Aden last week are a drop of the UAE humanitarian aid sea all over Yemen,” Mr Shatheli said.

“In the local authority in Aden we are really grateful and extremely delighted to see such projects launched in our city for such people because the martyrs' families will feel that they weren't left suffering alone,” he added.

“It is not strange for the UAE to take such advance steps in Aden, the UAE sacrificed its sons' blood for the sake of Yemen and its people to live in freedom and dignity so the words wouldn't be able to express our appreciation for our brothers in the UAE for their brotherly stances,” he explained.