Yemen situation is of profound concern to me – UN chief

UN Secretary General Bani Ki-moon during the meeting
UN Secretary General Bani Ki-moon during the meeting

KUWAIT, June 26 (KUNA) — The situation in Yemen is of profound concern to me, said UN Secretary General Bani Ki-moon Sunday, addressing delegations of the warring parties currently holding peace talks here. The UN-brokered talks were launched in Kuwait on April 21.
“There is an alarming scarcity of basic food items. The economy is in precarious condition. Whilst the cessation of hostilities is mostly holding, there have been serious violations, causing further casualties and suffering amongst the civilian population, including children,” said Ban. “This worrying situation gives you, the delegations to the Yemeni talks, a very serious responsibility.” However, Ban expressed hope by the commitment of both delegations over a period of many weeks, and into this holy month, to reach a successful outcome.
But he noted that “time is not on the side of the Yemeni people. With every day that the conflict remains unresolved, their situation grows worse. The longer the conflict endures, the more time it will take for Yemen to recover.
“The position of the international community is clear: the conflict must end, and Yemen must return to the transitional process and work towards the implementation of the Outcomes of the National Dialogue Conference.” Ban urged the delegations to prevent any further deterioration of the situation, and to show the responsibility and flexibility required to arrive at a comprehensive agreement ending the conflict.
“Yemen is a country of extraordinary beauty, bountiful natural resources and an ancient and noble people. I encourage you to work for the goals of: ending the violence, addressing the roots of the conflict and working together to build a better future for all Yemenis. I can assure that you have wholehearted support of the United Nations to meet these goals.” Ban also noted that he was encouraged by recent releases of prisoners of war and detainees. “I urge the release of all prisoners, including political detainees, journalists, civil society activists and others as a goodwill gesture ahead of the Eid holiday.” Ban, who started a visit to the country earlier today, once again, a thanked His Highness the Amir for the commitment and hospitality.
“I extend my best wishes to all, and particularly the people of Yemen, for the upcoming Eid,” he concluded. (end) hb