Minister of State Hoyer condemns violence against peaceful demonstrators in Yemen

31.05.2011 - Press release

Since last weekend, dozens of people have been killed and many injured during the violent suppression of peaceful protests in the Yemeni city of Taiz. In other parts of the country, too, protests against President Saleh continue with undiminished vigour.

In this connection Minister of State Werner Hoyer today (31 May) issued the following statement:

“I condemn in the strongest possible terms the renewed use of violence by security forces against peaceful demonstrators in Yemen. The brutality displayed against the protest movement in Taiz shows that President Saleh is willing to accept grave violations of human rights in order to secure his power.
To identify those responsible for these human rights violations, an independent team of investigators formed by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights should be allowed to travel to Yemen quickly and take up its work as soon as possible.
We reaffirm our demand that President Saleh no longer block the way to a political transition in Yemen. He must sign the Gulf Cooperation Council’s mediation plan immediately, relinquish power and let the country make a peaceful new start.”

Along with the violence used against demonstrators, clashes between forces supporting the regime and competing power elites have also been escalating in Sana’a. A ceasefire agreed upon four days ago has been broken.

During the most recent Foreign Affairs Council on 23 May, the EU foreign ministers expressed their support for an independent UN investigation regarding Yemen.

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