New York

14 January 2016

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

The Secretary-General welcomes the release of two Saudi citizens who had been held in Yemen since March 2015. He is greatly relieved that they were released in apparent good health. The Secretary-General thanks his Special Envoy for Yemen, Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed, for his efforts to secure the safe release of these individuals.

The two Saudi citizens departed Sana’a on the morning of 14 January, accompanied by the Special Envoy.

The Secretary-General expresses his gratitude to Ansar Allah for facilitating the release as an important confidence-building measure, which should help advance the peace process. He sincerely hopes that this step will be followed quickly by additional releases of prisoners by all sides and the return to peaceful dialogue.

The Secretary-General urges all Yemeni parties and the States in the region to commit to comprehensive and permanent ceasefire in order to enable the rapid resumption of peace talks facilitated by his Special Envoy.