S&Ds: the EU needs to work towards a better partnership with Yemen
The Socialists and Democrats called today on the EU to reconsider its role and forge a better partnership with Yemen during a conference organised by the S&D Group in the European Parliament.
The S&D Euro MPs maintained that the EU should redefine its role in order to respond to the numerous challenges ahead in the country. They added that the EU should use the contacts it has with all the players involved, internal and external, in the Yemeni crisis to promote humanitarian relief and a political solution.
During the conference, S&D Euro MPs Victor Boştinaru and Elena Valenciano discussed with exerts, academics and civil society representatives how the EU could make the best use of its different tools and instruments to promote peace building, stabilization and development of Yemen.
The stakeholders include representatives of international NGOs, Yemen civil society organizations, as well as academics and experts. At the end of the conference, a film on the EU role in Yemen by the award-winning Yemeni filmmaker Khadija al-Salimi was screened.
S&D vice-president Elena Valenciano MEP said:
“Yemen is currently the largest humanitarian crisis in the world, yet it does not receive the necessary attention from the international community.”
“Today, it is more urgent than ever that the EU works towards a better partnership with Yemen. The conditions are alarming with the country being at the brink of famine, according to the UN Refugee Agency. The EU cannot afford to watch the famine develop, nor can it afford to act alone.”
“With the negotiations in a deadlock, the conflict escalating and the humanitarian crisis reaching catastrophic proportions, the EU should redefine its role and respond to the daunting challenges ahead. For this purpose, combining increased humanitarian aid with a wider stabilization strategy, a more targeted recovery and peace building plan – through inclusive intra-Yemeni political dialogue – are necessary to assist the increasingly vulnerable Yemeni population.”
S&D vice-president Victor Boştinaru MEP said:
“This is a man-made disaster that has been very brutal on civilians. Yemenis are starving because of war. Humanitarian aid is crucial but solving the underlying problem is equally important – the civil war supported and exacerbated by external intervention and involvement! The country is slipping into famine and this can only get worse as the conflict unravels.
“The EU should play an important role in supporting a political transition. The EU can be seen as an honest broker but a lot more has to be done. Indifference is not an option. Urgent action is needed – including full funding for the Humanitarian Response Plan, steps to end the war and to facilitate the resumption of commercial food and other imports and allowing full access to all people in need.”
Foto: Tyler Hicks/The New York Times