Yemen: France calls upon the parties to act in order to reach a political agreement [fr]
STATEMENT BY MRS. NATHALIE BROADHURST,
DEPUTY PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF FRANCE TO THE UNITED NATIONS
TO THE SECURITY COUNCIL
(Translation from French)
New York, 15 March 2023
Thank you, Mr. President.
I join my colleagues in expressing my deepest condolences to Mozambique and Malawi following the cyclone that hit your countries.
I wish to thank Hans Grundberg and Joyce Msuya for their briefings. I also welcome the presence among us of the representative of Yemen.
I have three messages to convey.
First of all, the current dynamic is encouraging. A de facto truce continues to hold on the ground. It must be preserved and transformed into a lasting cessation of hostilities. France calls upon the parties, first and foremost the Houthis, to act responsibly in order to reach a political agreement with the Yemeni government.
This calm must go hand in hand with confidence-building measures, which are the only way to build a lasting peace. Here, France commends the meeting on prisoner exchanges currently being held in Geneva. We hope that the other mechanisms for dialogue and de-escalation, such as the military coordination committee, will also be reactivated under the aegis of the United Nations. France also recalls its commitment to the United Nations mechanism for the inspection of vessels arriving in Houthi-controlled ports.
In this context, we commend the decision taken by Saudi Arabia and Iran to restore their diplomatic relations. We hope that this decision will help advance the ongoing negotiations between the Yemeni parties and strengthen regional security and stability. In this regard, it is crucial that Iran cease its destabilizing activities.
This dynamic must lead to a comprehensive and inclusive political solution. This will require establishing a peace plan that takes into account the concerns and interests of all Yemenis. France will continue to give its full support to the Special Envoy to achieve that goal. Here, we reiterate the importance for Yemeni women to be involved in shaping their country’s future. We call upon the Houthis to engage in negotiations without delay and in good faith.
Finally, we must not forget the Yemenis and the severe humanitarian crisis they have been enduring for years. We announced a contribution of nearly 23 million euros for the year 2023 during the pledging conference held last month in Geneva.
However, aid cannot benefit the Yemenis unless working and security conditions for humanitarian personnel are fully guaranteed. This is why France reiterates its appeal for the preservation of humanitarian space. Restrictions imposed on United Nations and humanitarian personnel by the Houthis must cease, including the obligation for female humanitarian personnel to be accompanied by a male guardians. France calls upon the Houthis to release, immediately and unconditionally, detained United Nations and humanitarian personnel.
To conclude, the situation regarding the Safer oil tanker, as we know, continues to pose an imminent risk of an ecological and humanitarian disaster. Here, we commend the purchase by the United Nations of a replacement vessel that should allow the transfer of millions of barrels of oil. This is a crucial first step. We call for the rapid and full implementation of the United Nations facilitated plan.