Statement by Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel prior to his meeting with Prime Minister of Yemen Ahmed bin Dagher

16.05.2017 - Press release

Prior to his meeting today (16 May) with the Prime Minister of Yemen, Ahmed bin Dagher, Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel issued the following statement:

The people of Yemen are in a desperate situation. They face the threats of hunger, disease – for example, the current cholera outbreak – and, all too often, ongoing fighting.

Therefore, it is right for us to help wherever we can, including by increasing Germany’s humanitarian aid for Yemen in 2017 to 125 million euros. This makes us the third-largest donor. As essential as our aid is for the survival of the people in Yemen, it is also clear that the solution cannot be to accept the armed conflict and limit our efforts to humanitarian aid. On the contrary – we must continue to actively seek both political solutions and possibilities for compromise. This is the only way to enable a return to the negotiation process.

I have made an offer to UN Secretary‑General António Guterres, saying that Germany, as part of the effort to initiate a political process at the negotiation table, is prepared to assume an active role. We are willing to do so also because we are in contact with, and held in high regard by, neighbouring countries.

All parties to the conflict have a responsibility, in the interest of those who are suffering in Yemen, to stop playing for time and immediately cease all hostilities. The parties must make a serious effort to finally achieve progress towards resolving the deep intra‑Yemeni conflict. Considering the dreadful situation and that the international humanitarian community has shown solidarity for, and willingness to help, Yemen, we have very clear expectations in this regard.

We strongly support the mediation efforts of UN Special Envoy for Yemen, Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed. This week, high‑level representatives of Yemeni parties will again be coming to Berlin for an informal dialogue. This meeting will for the first time include representatives from the region.

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