Thank you, President, and thank you to Special Envoy Grundberg and USG Griffiths for your briefings and updates.
Let me begin by welcoming the nationwide truce in Yemen. It gives hope that the parties are engaging in a truce for the first time in six years. The truce comes at a critical time, after months of military escalation, with multiple cross-border attacks into Saudi Arabia, and airstrikes inside Yemen.
I sincerely thank the Special Envoy and other stakeholders for their extensive efforts in making this truce happen.
The situation is fragile, but this truce is a crucial step in the right direction. We hope the parties will seize this opportunity to build trust, and we encourage all efforts towards supporting and upholding the truce.
The humanitarian measures of the truce are vital. Relief for the crisis-affected Yemeni people is much-needed; especially considering the dire economic and humanitarian crises also affecting the population. Almost three-quarters of the civilian population rely on humanitarian assistance, including four out of five children.
We join others in welcomeing the recent entry of fuel ships to Hudaydah. This will hopefully alleviate the fuel crisis in the north of Yemen. This is important for the Yemenis, and also, for the humanitarian organizations working on their behalf. And we hope to see more results for the Yemeni people during the two months truce, such as opening of the roads to Taiz- to protect civilians, including children, and the resumption of commercial flights in and out of Sanaa.
A political settlement is the only way to create a sustainable solution. Norway commends the Special Envoy’s continued consultations this past month on the Framework for an inclusive, multi-track process, and we encourage all parties to engage in the UN-led efforts to end the conflict. We are therefore pleased that you Hans have visited Sana’a and thank you for the updates from your conversations.
We also welcome the recent discussions and aspirations by the participants in Riyadh, and outcome of the GCC conference. The resignation of President Hadi marks a shift in Yemeni politics, and we welcome the new Presidential Council. We encourage the Council to engage towards an inclusive political process and a lasting peace.
Norway’s experience in peace mediation has provided us with overwhelming evidence that an inclusive process, in which women, youth, and victims of conflict are meaningfully represented, offers the best hope of a sustainable solution.
We regret that there are no women in the newly appointed Presidential council, and continue to encourage efforts at bolstering women’s direct, full, equal, and meaningful participation.
We welcome the progress made on the issue of the Safer oil tanker, and the new plan to address the threat. We await an invitation for the donor conference.