Saudi Arabia announces $400 mn humanitarian aid for Ukraine: SPA news agency

AFP , Ahram Online , Saturday 15 Oct 2022

Saudi Arabia on Saturday announced $400 million in humanitarian aid for Ukraine, the official SPA news agency said, adding that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman had made a phone call to President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Ukraine s President Volodymyr Zelensky and  Saudi Arabia s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman
Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky and Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman

 

The prince emphasised "the Kingdom's position of supporting everything that will contribute to de-escalation, and the Kingdom's readiness to continue the efforts of mediation," SPA reported.

Saudi Arabia last month played an unexpected role in facilitating a prisoner-of-war swap between Moscow and Kyiv.

The war in Ukraine has, however, fuelled tensions between Saudi Arabia and the United States after the kingdom largely resisted pressure to ramp up oil production to ease the energy crisis resulting from the conflict.

The kingdom has come under growing criticism from Washington after the Saudi-led OPEC group of oil exporters agreed on a drastic production cut with Russia and other allies, which could send energy prices soaring even higher.

Washington has accused OPEC+ of aligning itself with Moscow, and on Wednesday, President Joe Biden threatened "consequences" for Saudi Arabia.

The Government of Saudi Arabia expressed its total rejection of statements issued about the Kingdom following the OPEC+ decision to cut oil production which have described the decision as taking sides in international conflicts and that it was politically motived against the United States.

These statements are not based on facts, and which are based on portraying the OPEC+ decision out of its purely economic context, an official at the Foreign Ministry said on Thursday in a statement. “This decision was taken unanimously by all member states of the OPEC+ group.”

According to the statement, the Kingdom affirms that the outcomes of the OPEC+ meetings are adopted through consensus among member states, and that they are not based on the unilateral decision by a single country. These outcomes are based purely on economic considerations that take into account maintaining balance of supply and demand in the oil markets, as well as aim to limit volatility that does not serve the interests of consumers and producers, as has been always the case within OPEC +.

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