Yemen: UN Security Council welcomes progress in political transition

Special Adviser on Yemen Jamal Benomar (left) and Council President, Ambassador Liu Jieyi of China, brief the press. UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

27 November 2013 – Welcoming progress thus far in Yemen’s ongoing political transition, the Security Council today pledged to support the Government’s efforts to rebuild the economy and promote national dialogue while warning all those intent on derailing the exercise that it is ready to consider “further measures in response to any actions by individuals or parties that are aimed at disrupting the transition process.”

Ambassador Liu Jieyi of China, which holds the Council’s rotating presidency for November, said its members also welcomed the Yemeni Government’s efforts to safeguard security, “including the National Dialogue Conference which has generated a peaceful, inclusive and meaningful dialogue about the country’s future amongst diverse actors, including youth, women, civil society representatives, the Houthi Movement and the Hiraak Southern Movement.”

Reading an agreed statement to the press following closed door consultations with Jamal Benomar, the Secretary-General's Special Advisor for Yemen, Ambassador Liu said the Council members expressed concern about the significant delays in concluding the Conference and emphasized the importance of concluding it “as soon as possible” to move to constitutional drafting and electoral preparations, as the next steps in the transition.

“They called on all parties to engage constructively in a spirit of compromise to address the remaining critical issues necessary to conclude the dialogue, in particular those concerning the southern question and the structure of the State,” he said.

The Security Council also reiterated concern over continuing reports of interference by those intent on disrupting, delaying or derailing the transition process and undermining the Yemeni Government. The Council President said the 15-member body condemned any such attempts, whether by members of the former regime or political opportunists, notably by abstaining from participation in the National Dialogue, threatening to do so or standing in the way of a consensus agreement to conclude the Dialogue.

“The members of the Security Council called on all parties to adhere to the guiding principles of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Initiative and Implementation Mechanism for the transition process,” he continued, adding that they reaffirmed their support to the Yemeni Government to safeguard security, promote social and economic development and push forward political, economic and security reforms.

Ambassador Liu said the Council underlined its commitment to follow closely the peaceful political transition in Yemen, and emphasized that the conclusion of that exercise should be based on the completion of the steps contained in the GCC Initiative and its Implementation Mechanism.

He said Council members also reaffirmed their readiness to consider further measures in response to any actions by individuals or parties that are aimed at disrupting the transition process.

“The members of the Security Council noted the expectation of the people of Yemen that a National Dialogue and transition process will lead to outcomes and actions that would improve security, governance and delivery of basic services to all Yemenis,” he said.

Mr. Benomar also addressed the press saying he was pleased to see the Council speaking in “one voice” and warning “spoilers” that action will be taken if they continued attempts to disrupt Yemen's peaceful transition process. He was also pleased that the Council had backed the GCC Initiative and Implementation Mechanism “and not an indicative timeline” for wrapping up that process.

“Overall, Yemen continues to make remarkable progress despite evident challenges,” said Mr. Benomar, underscoring that the country had made significant steps in laying town a blueprint for democratic transformation; achieving in a few months a goal that had taken other countries in similar situations a few years.


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