Thursday, 24 March 2022
Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
Overseas Development Aid
103. To ask the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade if he will report on Irish Aid to Yemen; if Irish Aid to Yemen is due to be increased given the worsening situation in the country; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [15362/22]
I propose to take Questions Nos. 103 and 156 together.
After more than seven years of crisis in Yemen, an estimated 23.4 million Yemenis will need humanitarian assistance during 2022.
Since 2012 Ireland, through the Irish Aid programme, has disbursed just over €34 million to Yemen. Over 90% of that funding, including €6,000,000 in two separate grants in 2021, has been channelled through the UN managed Yemen Humanitarian Fund (YHF). The YHF directly funds humanitarian partners operating in Yemen, enabling them to deliver timely and effective life-saving assistance to people who need it most. In 2021 25 donors contributed $96 million to the YHF, which allocated over $109 million to 106 humanitarian projects implemented by 51 partners. Ireland was the sixth largest donor last year.
On 16 March, at the High Level Pledging Event on Yemen, Minister Coveney pledged an additional €5 million in Irish Aid funding to Yemen this year, also to the YHF.
In addition, Irish Aid contributions to global funds and Irish Aid's substantial core funding to key agencies responding to the Yemen crisis, increases the total Irish response to humanitarian needs in Yemen. Among these Irish Aid partners are WFP, UNICEF, ICRC and the UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF). CERF makes emergency funding readily available for UN agencies and is an important funding mechanism for the Yemen crisis.
Augmenting Ireland's bilateral support is support through the European Union which since 2015 has contributed over €1.2 billion to respond to the crisis in Yemen. This includes €827 million in humanitarian aid and €407 million in development assistance. EU humanitarian aid includes food assistance, health care, education, water, and shelter. It also includes improved hygiene services in areas of high food insecurity and malnutrition, conflict-affected areas, and to displaced populations. So far this year €135 million in humanitarian aid has been allocated by the EU for those affected by the conflict in Yemen.
Conscious that the underlying drivers of conflict must be addressed if the humanitarian situation in Yemen is to change, at the UN Security Council Ireland has supported calls to end hostilities and continues to work with partners, including as a Member State of the EU, to support the work of Special Envoy of the UN Secretary-General to end the conflict.