Yemen: ‘Light at the end of the tunnel’ as first nationwide truce in six years continues |

The first nationwide armistice in six years coincides with the start of the holy month of Ramadan and includes provisions to improve the freedom of movement of civilians and goods across the war-torn Arab nation.

‘Turn towards peace’

The UN special envoy regards the move as “a moment” of respite and possibility, to pursue peace.

He noted that the Saudi-led coalition needs to have a “continued commitment” to support the internationally recognized Government, the Houthi opposition, the entire region and the international community, to ensure assured that the alliance was preserved and became “a turning point towards peace . ”

Since the beginning of the armistice in April 4, he points to “encouraging signs”, such as a significant reduction in violence and civilian casualties; no confirmed air strikes; more fuel flows through the ports of the Hudaydah region; and preparations for commercial flights from Sana’a airport – controlled by the Houthis – for the first time since 2016.

Addressing concerns

However, reports of military activities around Marib must be resolved through armistice mechanisms – or risk setting the stage for a new escalation.

“I would like to remind the parties that the fundamental principle of the truce is that the respite it offers must be used to make progress toward ending the war, not to climb the war,” Grundberg said. ladder.

The parties have publicly committed to de-escalation and this is what the Yemeni people and the international community expect from them“.

Benefits of the deal

Easing restrictions on the movement of goods and civilians is a priority for the truce.

“Flights to and from Sana’a Airport need to resume and we are working with our partners to make this happen as quickly as possible,” the UN special envoy said.

Another priority is the deal to pave the way in Taiz, which is hotly contested.

In Taiz it is imperative to work hard to pave the wayallowing civilians on both sides of the front lines, both in the city and in the surrounding areas, to go to work and school, and to facilitate trade.

Armistice ‘fragile’

He marked that the ceasefire – the result of the commitment of the parties and the “long-term and tireless efforts” of Yemen’s civilian organizations, youth groups and women’s peace activists to prevent stop the war -”it is still fragile and temporary

“We need to work collectively and intensively … to make sure it doesn’t break,” the UN official said, pledging to continue engaging stakeholders in its implementation, strengthening and expanding it. .

He explained that during his recent visit to Muscat and Sana’a, capitals held by the Houthis, he received “reaffirmed commitment to all aspects of the implementation of the truce.” while discussing the next steps of strengthening and extending it.

‘Rotate’ towards peace

Fragile deal offers “rare opportunity to move towards a peaceful future“, said Mr. Grundberg, describing the coming weeks as “a test of the parties’ commitment to upholding their obligations,” and building trust and confidence.

Yemen will need the support of the international community more than ever to find an inclusive, peaceful and sustainable end to the conflict.

“I will need your redoubled efforts and support during this critical period,” he said.

Security Council meets on situation in Yemen

UN photo / Ekinder Debebe

Security Council meets on situation in Yemen

Hope for tomorrow

UN Emergency Relief Coordinator Martin Griffiths says recent progress is helping to “pave the way” to a brighter future.

Fewer civilian casualties, more fuel tankers to Hudaydah and a truce are all positive stepshe say.

Furthermore, he cited the recently announced $3 billion economic support package that includes fuel and development assistance as well as a new $2 billion deposit into the Central Bank of Yemen – led by Saudi Arabia. and the United Arab Emirates – to help stabilize the currency.

“The rial has now recovered 25% of its value since this announcement,” the senior UN official explained.

This means that food and other essentials – nearly all of which are imported – will soon become more affordable.

Safer update

Efforts are also underway to address the threat posed by FSO Safer, has been anchored off the coast of Yemen in the Red Sea since 2015.

Mr. Griffiths, who is also director of humanitarian affairs, added that if around $80 million could be raised, one UN proposal May take effect in May to transfer oil from precarious tanker to temporary vessel before replacement Safer.

Security Council meets on situation in Yemen

UN photo / Ekinder Debebe

Security Council meets on situation in Yemen

Millions of people struggle to survive

While, Humanitarian assistance is needed today to keep millions of people alive.

The UN’s humanitarian chief said aid agencies are seeking $4.3 billion to assist 17.3 million people across the country this year.

He noted that while a March 16 event raised $1.3 billion in pledges — much less than was asked for — much more was needed.

“Finance remains the biggest challenge,” Griffiths stressed, noting that food, water, healthcare and support for displaced people will continue to scale down and eventually stop. back if they don’t get the money they need.

Allowing aid to collapse, would directly go against the positive momentum we are seeing in broader efforts to resolve Yemen’s crisis.“.

Out of budget

Despite the limitations on aid, including access challenges and intervention efforts, there has also been some improvement, the relief coordinator said.

He drew attention to a new agreement with local security forces on the west coast to facilitate humanitarian operations through the Dhubab checkpoint, describing it as “a long-term goal.” long” and a 2022 humanitarian needs analysis based on new data collected from all 333 counties across the Nation.

Mr Griffiths added: “We also appreciate the close cooperation we have with donors and other stakeholders on accessibility issues, which remain a top priority.

Humanitarian incarcerated

However, the humanitarian chief reminded that five months after the Houthi authorities detained two UN staff members in Sana’a, they are still being held.

And five other employees abducted in February by armed men in Abyan were raped for more than 60 days.

“Incidents like this are completely unacceptable and employees must be released,” he stressed.

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