Q – What can the international community, and in particular France, do to try and bring the warring parties back to the table for talks in the Yemeni conflict?
A – France regrets that consultations in Geneva at the United Nations’ invitation were unable to be held this past Saturday as planned. It calls on the parties to resume the talks led by Special Envoy Martin Griffiths – who, we repeat, has our full support – as swiftly as possible.
Given the triple humanitarian, health and food crisis being suffered by the Yemeni people, France took the initiative of convening experts on June 27 representing the nations and international agencies most heavily involved in Yemen to identify concrete means of responding to the humanitarian emergency, especially obstacles to accessing and distributing aid. That conference, held in Paris, receives regular follow-up with our partners in the region.
France reaffirms that the protection of civilians, the security of humanitarian and medical personnel, and free humanitarian access are all imperative. These obligations are incumbent on all the parties. France condemns violations of international humanitarian law in Yemen, regardless of who is responsible, as well as threats related to the firing of missiles against Saudi territory, for which the Houthis claim credit, and to international shipping in the Bab el-Mandeb Strait.
Only an inclusive negotiated political solution under the auspices of the UN will durably end the war in Yemen, ease the humanitarian situation in the long term, and restore stability and security to the Arabian Peninsula and the Bab el-Mandeb Strait. That is the aim of France’s efforts vis-à-vis all the countries involved, as well as the Yemeni government and the Houthis, with whom our ambassador is also in contact.