Check against delivery.
I would like to thank the Special Envoy to Yemen, Mr. Hans Grundberg, and the Acting Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, Mr. Ramesh Rajasingham, for their valuable briefings. We also thank the civil society representative, Ms. Ola Al-Aghbary, for highlighting numerous critical issues.
I would like to reiterate, at the outset, my country’s support for all efforts aimed at reaching a comprehensive political solution in Yemen under the auspices of the United Nations, which can bring an end to the Yemeni crisis, meet the legitimate aspirations of the Yemeni people, and achieve security and stability in both Yemen and across the region.
As such, I would like to focus today on four points:
First, achieving progress towards ending the Yemeni crisis is not possible until Houthi militias cease their hostilities and their repeated violations against the Yemeni people. The Houthis must understand that the only solution is a political solution that is agreed upon by the Yemeni people and free from any regional hegemonic aspirations.
Therefore, we condemn the Houthi militias’ continued escalation and their repeated attempts to capture Yemeni territories by force, as well as their continued disregard for the calls made by the Security Council and civil society to stop their attacks on the Ma’rib Governorate. We call on them to stop their escalation and end their siege on the Governorate. The Houthis also continue to violate the ceasefire in Hodeidah Governorate and hinder the movements of UNMHA staff. We also take this opportunity to welcome the appointment of Major General Michael Beary as head of UNMHA and acknowledge the efforts of his predecessor, General Guha.
We took note of the statement issued by UNMHA yesterday, which expressed great concern over reports of the militarization of Hodeidah ports. We welcome the Mission’s request to undertake an inspection. We call on the Houthis to respond to this request immediately and without conditions in accordance with the Stockholm Agreement.
The Houthis have repeatedly used explosive-laden speedboats and sea mines to threaten the freedom of navigation in the Red Sea and the Bab al-Mandab Strait. In this context, we condemn, in the strongest terms, the Houthi act of piracy against the civilian cargo vessel “RWABEE” off the port of Hodeidah. This is a dangerous escalation against the safety of maritime navigation in the Red Sea. It requires the adoption of a firm position by the Security Council. We thank all countries who have issued statements condemning this act of piracy.
Second, the UAE expresses its strong condemnation and denunciation of the attempt by the Iranian-backed Houthi militias to target the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s territory by using drones and ballistic missiles, which constitutes a flagrant violation of international law. Furthermore, the supply of these weapons to the Houthis, and providing them with training, constitute a clear and repeated violation of the arms embargo imposed by Resolution 2216.
Accordingly, my country reiterates its solidarity with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia against every threat to its security and stability, which is also a threat to stability in the region. We support the measures taken by the Kingdom to preserve its security and protect the safety of its residents.
Third, we stress the importance for Yemenis to reach consensus and come together in line with the Riyadh Agreement. They must also prioritize the best interest of Yemen to make tangible progress toward political processes and meet the aspirations of the Yemeni people. We also urge all parties to proactively work to ensure the meaningful and active participation of women in UN-facilitated political processes and in any future dialogues.
We believe that there is still a window of opportunity to end the crisis in the presence of genuine initiatives, including the peace initiative put forward by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as well as the propositions that Special Envoy Hans Grundberg is currently working on. We stress here the need to implement both the Riyadh Agreement and the Hodeidah Agreement.
Fourth, international efforts need to be intensified to respond to the humanitarian needs of the Yemeni people and consider the worsening humanitarian situation. The Yemeni people, especially women and children, are suffering greatly. More than 24 million Yemenis need relief aid because of the deterioration of the economy. For its part, the UAE has provided Yemen with humanitarian and development aid exceeding $6 billion since 2015. Moreover, my country has also been one of the largest international contributors to support Yemen in its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
We welcome the recent efforts of the Yemeni government to improve the economy and look forward to solutions that contribute to its revival.
On the other hand, we express our deep concern regarding the failure to find a solution to the Safer oil tanker due to the continued obstruction by the Houthis of any maintenance work. We call for the United Nations technical team to be granted access to the tanker to prevent an environmental disaster.
In conclusion, we hope that the Council will find unity to send a clear message to the Houthis and those who support them: they must end their destabilizing terrorist acts in the region and engage seriously and positively in the political track. This is the only way out of the crisis in Yemen.
I thank you Madame President.