New York

29 November 2016

Note to Correspondents - Statement attributable to the Secretary General's Special Envoy for Yemen Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed

The announcement by Ansar Allah and the General People’s Congress on the formation of a new government in Sana’a represents a new and concerning obstacle to the peace process and does not serve the interests of the people of Yemen in these difficult times. Such unilateral actions contradict the recent commitments provided by Ansar Allah and the General People’s Congress to the United Nations and to United States Secretary of State John Kerry in Muscat.

Yemen is at a critical juncture. The actions recently taken by Ansar Allah and the General People's Congress will only complicate the search for a peaceful solution.. The parties must hold Yemen’s national interests above narrow partisan ambitions and take immediate steps to end political divisions and address the country’s security, humanitarian and economic challenges. New political arrangement should only be based on UN sponsored negotiations, and not unilateral actions by any side.

There is still a chance to pull Yemen back from the brink. The roadmap I presented to the parties recently offers such an opportunity. I ask the representatives of Ansar Allah and the General People’s Congress to re-think their approach and demonstrate their commitment to the peace process with concrete actions. It is crucial to engage constructively in the peace process in order to reach a negotiated settlement that brings about a permanent end to military hostilities and enables the resumption of a peaceful, inclusive, orderly and Yemeni-led political transition that meets the legitimate demands and aspirations of the Yemeni people.

I urge all parties to recommit to and fully respect the terms and conditions of the Cessation of Hostilities, which will include a complete halt to ground and air military activities and allow the increased flow of humanitarian assistance. I call on all sides to resume working through the De-Escalation and Coordination Committee to facilitate the strengthening of the Cessation of Hostilities. Only a negotiated political settlement can put an end to the devastation and injustice brought about by the war.  The Yemeni people have suffered for far too long and their leaders should commit to restore peace and security to their country without further delay.