Statement by representative of the Russian Federation Mr.Vadim Kirpichenko at UNSC briefing on the situation in Yemen
We thank Special Envoy Grundberg and Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs D. Msuya for their briefings on the political and humanitarian developments in Yemen.
Renewed truce between the official Yemeni authorities and Ansar Allah movement that had been in effect since April this year expired on 2 October. Unfortunately, the sides failed to agree on the next renewal of the agreement. Nevertheless we commend the efforts of SESG Grundberg and his team who keep trying to find some common ground for the Presidential Leadership Council and the Houthis even in this dead-end situation.
At this stage our main task is to prevent a full-fledged military escalation. Resumption of hostilities will entail a political and humanitarian disaster. The Security Council needs to do its utmost to convince the sides in Yemen to set forth dialogue on most urgent issues even in the absence of written ceasefire arrangements. At the same time we underscore that attempts to antagonize one of the sides and make it solely responsible for the current situation will not promote the settlement process. We call on the Yemeni sides to demonstrate maximum restraint, abstain from provocations and keep engaging constructively with the Special Envoy.
We will continue providing all possible assistance to the UN mediation. We maintain contacts with all leading political forces in Yemen, drive them toward a compromise, and we call on all states who can influence the stakeholders in Yemen to take similar action. There is no alternative to elaborating political solutions in the course of a broad inter-Yemeni dialogue with participation of all parties to the conflict. Only direct negotiations of Yemen’s official authorities and Ansar Allah movement on all issues of interest will be able to break the impasse.
Even in the current conditions, Yemen’s leading political forces clearly realize the danger of a possible rollback to a full-fledged armed confrontation and so far abstain from steps that may trigger further escalation. Armed clashes that have started to recur in some Yemeni provinces remain sporadic for now. Anyway, the situation on the ground at this point is better than it used to be before the initial truce. This gives reasons to believe that the sides do not forsake the idea of getting back to the negotiation table and have their contradictions resolved in diplomatic terms. The Security Council has to help them with that.
Renewal of the truce for a longer term or its eventual extension, i.a. to the security and economy domains, is the only way out for the country. We do hope that ultimately, the sides will be able to overcome the contradictions and develop favorable conditions for further stabilization and a transition to a robust political process.
Let me remind of the numerous advantages that the six months of a truce brought to ordinary Yemenis, including established fuel deliveries through the ports of Hodeidah and commercial flights to Sanaa. Provisions of the ceasefire were generally observed with but few violations. All of this made everyday life of the Yemenis much easier. Nevertheless, the humanitarian situation in Yemen remains dire. Residents of many areas, including the city of Taiz, suffer from shortages of basic necessity items.
We are firmly convinced that despite some backlash at the political track, provision of the people of Yemen with food and medical supplies must continue on a non-discriminatory basis. Therefore we call to not stop reaching out to the international financial organizations and support relevant efforts of the UN specialized agencies. Restrictions on humanitarian deliveries and impediments to humanitarian engagement are unacceptable.