RASHAD MOHAMMED AL-ALIMI, President of the Presidential Leadership Council of Yemen, recalled that his country had entered the ninth year of its conflict and denounced the actions of militias and terrorist groups. He welcomed the support and unity of the international community on the Yemeni issue, as it supported the transfer of power based on the Gulf Cooperation Council Initiative and its implementation mechanism in 2011, and the start of the National Dialogue Conference with the participation of all categories of Yemeni society, including the Houthi. It led to a reference document guaranteeing people’s broad participation, their aspirations for democracy, justice, equality and citizenship, as well as freedom of thought and belief.
“This dream is very short lived,” he lamented, as the Houthi terrorist militias turned against the national consensus that emerged from this comprehensive dialogue. The militia prevented a new constitution, tried to invade the capital city and created obstacles to a national agreement and harmed the work of several of the country’s institutions. This was the beginning of a long-running destructive war, which lead to a loss of hundreds of thousands of lives, hundreds of thousands of refugees and to displacement of more than 4 million people. He also stated that floods and droughts, caused by the climate change, cause death and destruction.
Since 7 April, he continued, “a new era has started” in Yemen with the establishment of the Presidential Leadership Council as the sole legitimate representative body of the Yemeni people. Over the past six months, Yemen worked closely with the Saudi-led coalition, the United Arab Emirates, and regional and international partners to set up a reform programme urgently needed and improve the delivery of basic services, as well as to stem the effects of acute inflation and the global food crisis. The Presidential Council acts today in line with the Charter of the United Nations and in cooperation with the Organization’s agencies and political missions to guarantee the political, social and economic rights of women to bring an end to child exploitation. “We want a lasting peace,” he emphasized. He stated that there were also many commitments undertaken by the United States, the European Union and the United Kingdom to finance many processes in Yemen. Nonetheless, his country continues to experience a real gap in funding and therefore required humanitarian emergency assistance and rapid response from humanitarian organizations.
He underscored the importance of acting against the Houthi militias and to address the Safer oil tanker situation, which might lead to a particularly serious environmental disaster. Furthermore, he called for greater efforts to bring an end to the situation that is being used by the militias as a tool to exert pressure. “We are calling upon all countries of the world to ensure free navigation in international waters,” he added.