UN envoy ‘mustering’ required support for consultations to resolve Yemen conflict

WHO and the Cleaning and Improvement Fund in Yemen have launched a cleanup campaign targeting Al-Tahrir and Maen districts, the two most populated areas in Sana’a, where tons of garbage continue to accumulate. Photo: WHO Yemen

WHO and the Cleaning and Improvement Fund in Yemen have launched a cleanup campaign targeting Al-Tahrir and Maen districts, the two most populated areas in Sana’a, where tons of garbage continue to accumulate. Photo: WHO Yemen

4 June 2015 – The United Nations Special Envoy for Yemen, Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed, is working intensively to bring the parties to the conflict together as soon as possible in Geneva, a spokesperson for the world body said today.

“Mr. Ahmed is currently mustering the required Yemeni, regional and international support before announcing the start of the consultations. We hope to be able to make an announcement very soon,” Stéphane Dujarric said at a press briefing at UN Headquarters.

The Special Envoy is in Abu Dhabi today, following a visit to Riyadh, and is likely to undertake additional visits and extensive consultations in the subregion.

As efforts to convene the Yemen consultations continue, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon once again reiterates his call for a further humanitarian pause in order to allow assistance to reach the Yemeni people, Mr. Dujarric emphasized.

Humanitarian needs are becoming increasingly intense, and urgent measures by the international community, as well as regional States, are required to alleviate the worst consequences of the fighting.

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) reported that the Operations Room of the Ministry of Health in Sana’a, which manages all emergency operations for Yemen, was damaged yesterday.

The damage incurred is expected to further cripple already strained emergency health relief operations. The UN’s humanitarian partners have supported the Ministry of Health in ensuring effective emergency health response, including equipping and building the capacity of the very Operations Room that was damaged yesterday.

Yesterday’s incident follows attacks on dozens of health facilities by fighting, shelling, and airstrikes in Yemen since the escalation of the conflict in March. In addition, ten health care workers have been killed or injured while carrying out their duties since that time. The World Health Organization (WHO) continues to appeal for the protection of health facilities, staff and patients.

The new Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, Stephen O’Brien, warned yesterday in a briefing to the Security Council that a full resumption of commercial imports of vital commodities, including food, fuel and medicines, is required to avoid a looming humanitarian catastrophe.