Manama: Saudi Arabia has stressed that it has not made any major new financial pledges to the reconstruction of Syria since August.
On Monday, US President Donald Trump tweeted that Saudi Arabia “has now agreed to spend the necessary money needed to help rebuild Syria, instead of the United States.”
“Isn’t it nice when immensely wealthy countries help rebuild their neighbours rather than a Great Country, the U.S., that is 5000 miles away. Thanks to Saudi A!”, he posted.
However, US television business news channel CNBC quoted an official at the Saudi embassy in Washington as saying that the kingdom has not made any major new financial commitment to Syria since August when the State Department announced that Saudi Arabia had committed $100 million to a fund to stabilise areas of Syria liberated from Daesh terrorists.
“The Kingdom is a major contributor to the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS (Daesh), flying the second highest number of sorties against ISIS (Daesh) in Syria, as well as, donating millions of dollars for relief efforts there,” the Saudi official told CNBC in an email on Tuesday.
In August, the State Department said it secured $300 million from the coalition partners to help stabilise parts of Syria retaken from Daesh. Trump had demanded that allies help carry the costs of the war.
According to the United Nations, the conflict has cost Syria $388 billion in lost economic output and damage to infrastructure and homes.