The Foreign Ministers of the United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Oman and the US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs met today to discuss the situation in Yemen. They received a briefing from the UN Special Envoy, and discussed the political, humanitarian and security situation.
Ministers underlined that the conflict has created an urgent humanitarian crisis. Ministers agreed that there was a shared responsibility among all parties to ensure safe, rapid and unhindered access for goods and for humanitarian personnel throughout Yemen. Ministers discussed ways of enhancing inspection mechanisms to prevent weapons smuggling into Yemen, while ensuring unimpeded movement of goods into and throughout Yemen.
The Ministers strongly condemned the 4 November missile attack on Riyadh, which deliberately targeted a civilian area. They expressed full support for Saudi Arabia and its legitimate security concerns. Ministers underlined that the firing of ballistic missiles by Houthi forces into neighbouring countries posed threats to regional security and prolonged the conflict. Ministers called for an immediate end to such attacks by Houthi forces and their allies.
The Ministers reaffirmed that the provision of weapons to Houthi forces, and those allied to former President Saleh, is a violation of UN Security Council Resolutions 2216 and 2231. The Ministers expressed strong support for UN efforts to investigate the origins of the missiles and take appropriate action.
Ministers backed a redoubling of efforts to reach a political solution which remains the only route to ending the conflict and addressing security threats to Yemen’s neighbours. Ministers recognised the need for all sides to show flexibility and abandon pre-conditions and called on the Houthis and their allies to engage the UN Special Envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed on the political process.
The Ministers agreed that this urgent issue would necessitate them meeting and consulting regularly to coordinate approaches and identify concrete steps leading to a political settlement.