Malaysian groups launch Yemen aid campaign

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JAKARTA, Indonesia

The Malaysian Relief Agency and the Yemeni Embassy in Malaysia have launched a campaign to assist 22,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Yemen, the agency said on Friday.

“The ongoing war in Yemen has resulted in around 233,000 deaths, as well as 131,000 people who lack food, healthcare services, and infrastructure,” Dr. Shahrizal Azwan Samsudin, secretary-general of the relief agency, said in a statement.

The campaign aims to raise $4.6 million ringgits ($1.1 million), he added.

According to Samsudin, the MRA has been delivering humanitarian assistance to Yemen since 2015 and has disbursed some 7 million ringgits (approx. $1.7 million) to over 273,000 people.

The Help Yemen campaign also involves other groups, including Humanitarian Care Malaysia, Pertubuhan Himpunan Lepasan Institusi Pendidikan Malaysia, Global Peace Mission, Yayasan Pembangunan Al-Tawasul, Initiative for Malaysian Humanitarian, and the Yemeni community in Malaysia, read the statement.

On Wednesday, Malaysia hailed Saudi Arabia for its latest initiative to end the conflict and restart the political process in Yemen.

“The initiative is a very significant step forward for Yemen,” the Foreign Ministry said in a statement, adding that Malaysia firmly believes that “an inclusive and negotiated political settlement” is the only way to achieve a lasting solution.

“We are ready to work closely with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the international community towards this goal for lasting peace, security, and stability in Yemen,” read the statement.

Yemen has been wracked by violence and chaos since 2014, when Shia Houthi rebels overran much of the country, including the capital Sana’a.

It remains the world’s worst humanitarian crisis with nearly 80%, or more than 24 million, of the population in need of assistance and protection, along with over 13 million in danger of starving to death, according to the UN.

*Writing by Maria Elisa Hospita from Anadolu Agency’s Indonesian language service

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