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Saudi, UAE, American, British FMs Underline Support to Political Solution in Yemen

Saudi, UAE, American, British FMs Underline Support to Political Solution in Yemen

Thursday, 14 February, 2019 - 10:45
A view of the city of Aden, Yemen September 4, 2018. (Reuters)
Asharq Al-Awsat
The foreign ministers of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and the United States of America met in Warsaw Wednesday to discuss the situation in Yemen.

In their statement following the meeting, the ministers reiterated their commitment to a comprehensive political solution to the conflict in Yemen and their endorsement of the agreements reached in Sweden by the Yemeni parties in December 2018.

They welcomed the adoption of UN Security Council resolutions 2451 and 2452, which support the implementation of these agreements and build on the political framework set out in resolution 2216, the Gulf Cooperation Council initiative and the national dialogue conference outcomes.

The ministers therefore, reiterated their full support for the tireless efforts of the UN Special Envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths.

They called on the Yemeni parties to rapidly and fully implement the agreements reached in December, welcoming the preliminary agreement reached on the deployment of forces in Hodeidah by the Redeployment Coordination Committee (RCC).

They called on the legitimate government and Iran-backed Houthi militias to confirm their agreement to this plan and to work urgently with the RCC and the UN Mission to support the Hodeidah Agreement (UNMHA). This demands that they implement the mutual redeployment of forces from the city of Hodeidah and the ports of Hodeidah, Salif and Ras Issa in compliance with their obligations.

They stressed that there should be no further stalling tactics with regards to the implementation of the deal. They agreed to monitor the situation, coordinate closely and meet again if there are any further delays.

Moreover, they urged the Yemeni parties in their areas of control, in particular the Houthis who still control Hodeidah’s three ports, to ensure the security and safety of UNMHA personnel, and to facilitate the unhindered and expeditious movement into and within Yemen of personnel, equipment, provisions and essential supplies in accordance with UNSCR 2452.

They expressed concern about the bureaucratic impediments puts in place by the Houthis which are hampering UNMHA’s vital work. They also called on the Yemeni parties to redouble their efforts to finalize arrangement for implementation of the prisoner exchange agreement and to establish the Taiz Joint Coordination Committee.

Furthermore, the gatherers in Warsaw also addressed Iran’s destabilizing effect on Yemen, through the illicit provision of funds, ballistic missiles and advanced weaponry to the Houthis, and in the wider region.

The ministers noted a UN Panel of Experts’ finding that Tehran has provided advanced weaponry to the Houthis in violation of resolutions 2216 and 2231.

In addition, they strongly condemned the Houthi drone attack on Al-Anad airport on January 19. They underlined that the firing of ballistic missiles and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles by Houthi forces into neighboring countries posed threats to regional security and prolonged the conflict. The ministers expressed full support for Saudi Arabia and its legitimate national security concerns and called for an immediate end to such attacks by Houthi forces and their allies.

In efforts to reduce illicit fuel imports by the Houthis, the ministers discussed steps to curb activity facilitating Iranian oil flows while at the same time, ensuring fuel flows through Red Sea ports.

They also discussed the urgent humanitarian crisis, which the conflict has created and reiterated the importance of stabilizing the economy, keeping food and fuel coming into the country and supporting economic confidence-building measures as part of the peace process.

In this regard, the ministers welcomed the deposit of $2.2 billion by Saudi Arabia to the Central Bank of Yemen, their financial contribution to oil derivatives and the $570 million contribution paid by Saudi Arabia and the UAE to tackle food security and pay teachers’ salaries.

They also welcomed the government of Yemen’s determination to resume regular payment of the salaries of civil servants, teachers and health workers across the country and called on the Houthis to cooperate with this process.

The ministers agreed that there is a window of opportunity to end the conflict in Yemen and to redouble their efforts to reach a political solution.

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