Yemen Day in Canada [Archives:1999/16/Front Page]

April 19 1999

On Monday, April 19th, the Canadian International Development Agency, the foreign aid branch of the Canadian Foreign Ministry, is holding a one-day information session on Yemen in Ottawa. It is expected to be kicked off by Dr. Norman Cook, Director of the Priorities and Special Needs Department of CIDA. His assistant, Fateema Amin, who was responsible for the arrangements, explained that they are interested in providing more information on Yemen’s twin transformation – political democratization and economic reforms, and the needs that arise as a result.
The participants in the session are officials from the Foreign Ministry, CIDA, businessmen, and representatives of the NGO movement and the media. A briefing was given on the on-going Canadian aid to Yemen, which totals US $1.1 million for 1999. Most of this money is earmarked for the demining effort, although some allocations are made to support human rights and NGO activities in Yemen. Dr. Robinson and a group of MDs, who have been visiting Yemen to offer short-term training and specialized medical treatment, will also brief the audience. They will be showing slide pictures of the country.
The keynote speaker, Prof. Abdulaziz Al-Saqqaf, Chairman of the Human Rights, Liberties and NGO Committee of the Consultative Council, gave a presentation on the progress made in the transformation process. “Although a lot of ¼progress has been made, the process has not reached the stage of being irreversible. That is why it is important to continue to positively engage in the process,” he said. He explained that Yemen has met all the priorities that Canada has announced for qualifying for a meaningful level of assistance.