Charities Blast The UK Government For Cutting Foreign Aid

The government of the UK is facing serious financial challenges amid the Covid-19 pandemic and backlashes over cuttings.

UK foreign aid: Yemen cut condemned by charities
Displaced Yemenis/Picture credit: BBC

The government of the UK is facing serious financial challenges amid the Covid-19 pandemic and backlashes over cuttings.

Recently ministers came under criticism for recommending a 1 per cent pay increase for all NHS staff across England which Health unions described as a “kick in the tooth” for “Covid heroes”.

In a bid to reduce expenditure, the government of the UK decided to cut aid to Yemen which prompted a backlash from more than 100 UK charities.

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A UK government spokesman said: “The seismic impact of the pandemic on the UK economy has forced us to take tough but necessary decisions, including temporarily reducing the overall amount we spend on aid”.

The government has promised to give at least £87 million in aid to the Middle Eastern country, down from £164 in 2019-2020.

In a letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnson, charities said ministers have made a misjudgement by anticipating that the public will be happy to turn a blind eye to countries affected by poverty, war and disease.

“History will not judge this nation kindly if the government chooses to step away from the people in Yemen and thus destroy the UK’s global reputation as a country that steps up to help those most in need,” the letter says.

A leaked document dated February suggests Yemen is not the only country whose aid will be cut. It stated that Syria`s aid will cut by 67 per cent and Lebanon by 88 per cent.

Ministers are also considering to cut aid to Nigeria by 58 per cent Somalia 60 per cent, South Sudan59 per cent and the Democratic Republic of Congo by 60 per cent, the document says.

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Danny Sriskandarajah, Oxfam GB chief executive, said: “Aid cuts are a false economy that will remove a vital lifeline from millions of people in Yemen and beyond who can’t feed their families, have lost their homes and whose lives are threatened by conflict and Covid.”

Shadow foreign secretary Lisa Nandy said cutting foreign aid is “abandoning our moral obligations”.

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