Security Council Press Statement on Yemen

SC/13785
17 April 2019

Security Council Press Statement on Yemen

The following Security Council press statement was issued today by Council President Christoph Heusgen (Germany):

The members of the Security Council expressed their grave concern that, four months after the agreements reached by the Government of Yemen and the Houthis in Stockholm, those agreements have not yet been implemented.  They reiterated their endorsement of the Stockholm Agreement, circulated as document S/2018/1134, and reiterated their call for it to be implemented without delay.

The members of the Security Council underlined their full support for the Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for Yemen and the Chair of the Redeployment Coordination Committee (RCC) and welcomed their tireless efforts to support implementation of the Stockholm Agreement.

The members of the Security Council welcomed the agreement by the Government of Yemen and the Houthis to the Concept of Operations for Phase 1 of redeployments under the Hodeidah Agreement.  They called on both parties to engage constructively with the Special Envoy and the Chair of the RCC to swiftly agree on local security force arrangements and the Concept of Operations for Phase 2 of redeployments.  The members of the Security Council called on both parties to implement the redeployment plans as soon as possible and not seek to exploit the redeployment process.  They reaffirmed their commitment to monitor the parties’ compliance with the redeployment plans.

The members of the Security Council noted that bureaucratic impediments, including at a local level, continued to hamper the UN’s ability to operate effectively in Hodeidah.  They called on the parties to take all necessary steps to facilitate the unhindered and expeditious movement into and across Yemen of UN personnel, equipment, provisions and essential supplies, including by providing appropriate arrangements for the UNMHA [United Nations Mission to support the Hodeidah Agreement] ship, and to continue to ensure the security and safety of UN personnel, in accordance with resolution 2452 (2019).

The members of the Security Council noted with concern continued violence that risks undermining the ceasefire in Hodeidah and called on the parties to redouble efforts to finalize arrangements for the Prisoner Exchange Agreement and for the establishment of the Taiz Joint Coordination Committee.  They also expressed concern about the recent escalation in violence elsewhere in Yemen, notably in Hajjah and on the Yemeni-Saudi border.

The members of the Security Council reiterated their concern about the continued deterioration of the humanitarian situation across Yemen and encouraged the international community to fully support the 2019 UN Humanitarian Response Plan.  They welcomed the generous pledges made at the High-Level Pledging Event for the Humanitarian Crisis in Yemen in February, and called on all donors to disperse their pledged funds urgently.  They further welcomed the announcement by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates of a $200 million contribution to UN agencies in Yemen for humanitarian relief during the Holy Month of Ramadan.

The members of the Security Council reiterated their call on the parties to facilitate the rapid, safe and unhindered access for humanitarian personnel and supplies into and across all areas of Yemen, as well as the rapid and sustained access to humanitarian facilities, including food storage facilities and hospitals.  They again stressed the urgent need for sustained UN access to the Red Sea Mills.  They also called on the parties to facilitate the unhindered flow of commercial and humanitarian supplies into and throughout Yemen.

The members of the Security Council further reiterated their call on the parties to fulfil their obligations under international human rights law and international humanitarian law, including ensuring the protection of civilians.  They expressed deep concern at the devastating impact this conflict has had on civilians, especially Yemeni children.  They reminded all parties of their obligations towards children affected by armed conflict and called on them to engage constructively with the Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict in this regard and to implement their commitments and obligations.

The members of the Security Council recalled their request to the Secretary‑General to report monthly on progress regarding the implementation of resolution 2452 (2019), including on any obstructions to the effective operation of UNMHA caused by any party; and on resolution 2451 (2018), including on any non‑compliance by any party.

The members of the Security Council underlined the need for a comprehensive political settlement as the only way to end the conflict.  They called on the parties to engage constructively with the Special Envoy in fulfilling their obligations agreed in Stockholm.  They recognized the crucial peacebuilding role played by women in Yemen and reiterated their belief that a lasting solution can only be reached with the full participation of women and meaningful engagement of youth in the political process.

The members of the Security Council noted that the agreements reached in Stockholm are an important step in the process to end the conflict in Yemen.  They called on the parties to renew their commitment to this process to reach a Yemeni-led comprehensive political settlement as set out in resolution 2216 (2015) and other relevant Security Council resolutions and presidential statements, as well as by the Gulf Cooperation Council initiative and its Implementation Mechanism and the outcomes of the National Dialogue Conference.  They reaffirmed their strong commitment to the unity, sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Yemen.

For information media. Not an official record.