Today, an oral intervention was delivered at the 43rd session of the United Nations Human Rights Council, under Item 2 regarding oral updates by the High Commissioner on activities in Colombia, Guatemala, Honduras, Cyprus, the Islamic Republic of Iran and Sri Lanka, Eritrea, Nicaragua, Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and Yemen. The intervention focused on the importance of cooperation between the de-facto authority in Sanaa and UN agencies to alleviate the suffering faced by millions in Yemen. 

Please continue reading for the full text of the statement, or click here for a PDF of the remarks.

Mr President,

We support the High Commissioner’s call for continued independent international investigations into violations of international humanitarian law & war crimes occurring in Yemen and continue to call on all parties to respect their obligations under international law, resolutions and agreements entered into.

We take the opportunity to welcome the resolution passed by the de facto authority in Sanaa that removed the unconscionable 2% tax on humanitarian aid, replaced 120 tons of flour taken without permission from the World Food Program and ordered the release of equipment belonging to it. Cooperation between the de facto authority and UN agencies is imperative to alleviating some of the suffering faced by millions of civilians in Yemen.

We also welcome the Saudi Coalition’s announcement of periodic flights of 30 civilians requiring medical treatment abroad but it’s a drop in the bucket as there are 350,000 civilians who need the same, 100,000 civilians in limbo outside of Yemen unable to return, and millions whose mobility is restricted. After 4 years, we can be rest assured that continuing the flight ban will not change the outcome of this war. The blockade imposed on Yemen should also be lifted as there is no possible military advantage that could justify the use of starvation of millions as a weapon of war.

Mr. President,

We call on the Council to apply pressure on Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Bahrain as states participating in the war on Yemen to implement the terms of the Stockholm Agreement fully and ultimately, bring about an end to this war.

Thank you.