The humanitarian situation in Yemen appears likely to worsen, due to fighting in Marib province.
In light of this, Arab Organisation for Human Rights in the UK (AOHR UK) again calls on all relevant international bodies, the various armed forces directly involved in the conflict, and those forces’ various international supporters, to commit to a ceasefire in a country that has suffered nearly seven years of war.
On Monday (18th February), the United Nation’s (UN) Special Envoy for Yemen Martin Griffiths reported to the UN’s Security Council that “the conflict in Yemen has taken a sharp escalatory turn”, with fighting in the previously relatively quiet Marib province.
“Yemenis own that vision of the future and must drive all our work”, Griffiths told the Security Council.
“The only way to realize these aspirations is through a genuinely inclusive, Yemeni-led political process under United Nations auspices supported by the international community here represented”, he continued.
AOHR UK underlines that American, British, and French arms sales to both Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are decisive to the continuance of the conflict. These must cease immediately, in order to prevent further catastrophe in Marib and the wider country.
AOHR UK added that Oil-rich Marib had been a relatively peaceful part of Yemen, having received up to 1 million Internally Displaced Peoples (IDP) since the beginning of the conflict.
The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) has reported that almost 200,000 Yemenis were displaced last year. Over 4 million Yemenis have been displaced since 2014, it has been reported. The UN reports that approximately 233,000 Yemenis have died due to the conflict.
However, following the renewal of British arms sales to Saudi in July 2020, official figures show that the UK government authorised £1.39 billion worth of weapons exports to the country over the following quarter, the vast majority of which were in the same class as bombs and missiles. The Saudi-led coalition’s lethal air-raids continued throughout that period.
AOHR UK demands that international pressure, including the cessation of arms sales, must be exerted on coalition forces, in order to prevent further loss of life in Marib and the country.