August 15, 2022
Let me begin by expressing condolences to the brotherly people of Armenia in connection with the death of people as a result of a fire in the Surmalu shopping mall in Yerevan, as well as to the brotherly people of Egypt in relation to the tragic consequences of the fire that occurred in the Abu Sefein Church in Giza. Our thoughts and prayers go to the relatives and friends of the victims and we hope for a speedy recovery of all those injured as a result of these two tragic events.
We thank Special Envoy of the UN Secretary-General for Yemen HansGrundberg and Acting Operations Director of the OCHA Ghada Mudawi for their updates on the political and humanitarian situation in Yemen.
We welcome the decision of the official authorities of the Republic of Yemen and the Ansar Allah movement to extend the ceasefire in the country for another two months on the same terms. This step opens up real opportunities for further stabilization. We hope that it will facilitate the transition to direct full-scale negotiations between the parties, including on the issues of security and economy. We hope that they will be able to overcome the outstanding differences.
In this regard, we highly appreciate the efforts of Mr. Grundberg, as well as those of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Oman, who played a key role in establishing inter-Yemeni contacts in order to prolong the period of “lull”. For our part, we will continue to provide all possible assistance to international mediation efforts in Yemen. We maintain contacts with all leading political actors, actively urging them to demonstrate a constructive approach and compromise. We see no alternative to working out the necessary political decisions within the framework of a broad inter-Yemeni dialogue with the participation of all the parties involved in the conflict.
We hope that with a stable and lasting ceasefire in place it will be possible to consolidate the positive advances in the search for solutions to the Yemeni conflict that has been dragging on for years. First of all, it will depend on the willingness of the main Yemeni actors to maintain constructive engagement with the United Nations in order to implement the provisions of the current ceasefire regime and potentially expand its modalities with the goal of achieving a comprehensive settlement in the long-suffering Yemen.
Unfortunately, one of the main “vulnerable points” – modalities for unlocking Taiz – has not been resolved yet. In this regard, we call on the parties to demonstrate further flexibility and continue a substantive discussion of this important issue and look for mutually acceptable solutions.
We note with satisfaction that the ceasefire, that has been in place since April, is generally observed despite a small number of violations. This gives ordinary Yemenis a long-awaited pause and a hope for a return to normal life. The leading political stakeholders in Yemen are well aware of the danger of slipping back into a military confrontation and are seeking to prevent such a scenario. We welcome the ongoing work of the military coordination committee to observe the terms of the ceasefire.
For the first time in the four months of the ceasefire, the humanitarian situation for the Yemeni civilians has significantly improved. We note joint steps to establish fuel supplies through the ports of Hudaydah and maintain commercial flights to and from Sana’a. Nevertheless, the socio-economic situation in the country remains extremely dire. It is necessary to normalize and ensure a regular flow of essential goods, primarily food, medical supplies and basic necessities, to the Yemenis ona non-discriminatory basis. Creating any restrictions for this kind of supplies or obstacles for the work of humanitarian workers is unacceptable.
In conclusion, we would like to once again recall Security Council resolution 598 and other initiatives aimed at regional stabilization, including the updated Russian Collective Security Concept.