New York

26 March 2015

Statement attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on Yemen

The Secretary-General notes that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has announced that, at the request of the Government of Yemen, it has begun military operations in Yemen.  He is aware of reports that other states, in particular members of the Gulf Cooperation Council, are also supporting these operations.

The Secretary-General recalls the Security Council's Presidential Statement of 22 March which, while supporting the legitimacy of the President of Yemen, Abdo Rabbo Mansour Hadi, called upon all parties and Member States to refrain from taking any actions that undermine the unity, sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Yemen. The Security Council also called on all Member States to refrain from external interference which seeks to foment conflict and instability and instead to support the political transition.

The Secretary-General reminds all parties involved of their obligations under international humanitarian law to ensure the protection of civilians and of all humanitarian and United Nations and associated personnel, as well as of the rules and principles of international human rights law and refugee law.

The Secretary-General highly appreciates the tireless efforts of his Special Adviser Jamal Benomar and notes that, despite escalation, negotiations remain the only option for ultimately resolving the Yemeni crisis.

The Secretary-General will continue to closely monitor the unfolding situation in Yemen.