Saudis trapped in Yemen ‘need help,’ charitable society says

A view of the Saudi embassy compound in Sanaa February 14, 2015. A number of Saudi families living in Yemen have been left stranded after it closed its doors. (Reuters)

A number of Saudi families living in Yemen have been left stranded after the Saudi Embassy in Sanaa shut down its services due to the recent political unrest in the country.

The Saudi Charitable Society for the Welfare of Saudi Families Abroad (Awasser) has stepped in to help these people, according to its Chairman Tawfeeq al-Suwailem.

He said the political unrest in Yemen has highlighted the plight of foreigners living in Yemen after their embassies were shut down.

Al-Suwailem told a local Saudi daily: “The recent security development in Yemen has led to a working plan in coordination with a number of embassies to extend a helping hand to the families trapped in Yemen.

“We began executing a plan in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Interior Ministry and Ministry of Social Affairs.”

While Awasser continues to provide health, educational and financial services to families stranded abroad, it claimed that shutting down embassies is making its job difficult and disconnecting the organization from the families it is trying to help.

The main work of Awasser is helping children born to Saudi fathers in foreign countries.

It provides all procedural and legal assistance free of charge to abandoned Saudi families living abroad such as monthly assistance, winter clothing allowance, school assistance and housing and air tickets for those who want to return home.

Awasser also aims to provide all necessary requirements for their return to the country and coordinates with the government, private institutions and NGOs working for charity to provide all their needs.

They also carry out relevant research and studies, especially on getting married outside and the negative effects of such relationships.

Awasser helps its beneficiaries in all legalization procedures, including issuance of their Saudi identity cards.

This article was first published in the Saudi Gazette on February 25, 2015.

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:45 - GMT 06:45