Council for MENA affairs (ForMENA) expresses its extreme concern regarding the current events in Yemen. In particular, we condemn the clear and obvious human rights violations and the disastrous deterioration of humanitarian and living conditions for the civilian population. This has resulted from the actions of armed Ansar Allah Houthi groups and other militias loyal to former President Ali Abdullah Saleh.
According to information received by ForMENA’s Human Rights and Public Freedoms Unit from local, regional and international human rights organisations, the following violations have been recorded:
- Lack of commitment by Houthis and affiliated militias to the framework established by the GCC initiative, intended to restore constitutional institution-building through national dialogue.
- Lack of commitment by the same groups to the United Nations Security Council Resolutions No. 2140 and 2216, which called for the cessation of all forms of violence and the targeting of civilians, as well as specifically demanding and end to the militias’ control of the Yemeni capital Sanaa’ and the halting of their expansion to other cities in Yemen.
- The practice of arbitrary detentions and repression of political activists by the Houthis and affiliated militias.
- Failure to protect civilians in conflict zones and the indiscriminate shelling of unarmed residents in the provinces of Aden and Taiz, as well as the use of civil and public facilities as bases for armed militias. This has led to the civilian population becoming involved in armed conflict against their will.
- Regular assault of medical and relief crews by Houthi and affiliated militias, in addition to the targeting of unarmed civilians attempting to flee conflict zones, specifically in the cities of Aden and Taiz in south Yemen.
- The recruitment of minors and children in Houthi and affiliated militias. This is a clear violation of international law.
We in Council for MENA affairs (ForMENA) call on all international institutions, the European Commissions, and UN human rights bodies to respond quickly and decisively in order to achieve:
- The immediate cessation of armed actions by the armed militias affiliated to Houthis and other armed groups loyal to the former president, and the provision of safe corridors for the delivery of humanitarian aid to the population of unarmed civilians in Yemen.
- The withdrawal of the armed groups affiliated to Houthis and the armed militias loyal to former president from cities occupied by force of arms and a return to the principle of dialogue to resolve the Yemeni crisis.
- The resumption of the constitutional, legislative and civil work of state institutions in order to enable the Yemeni President and his government to complete the implementation of the Gulf initiative and the national dialogue, which envisage the rebuilding of the Yemeni state according to the aspirations and hopes of the people of Yemen.
We in Council for MENA affairs (ForMENA) emphasise our continuous attention to the humanitarian and human rights situation in Yemen through our close cooperation with local, regional and international partners. We will continue to call for the immediate cessation of such flagrant violations of the rights of civilians and support the Yemeni people in their struggle to establish a democratic, stable and responsible state.
Council for MENA affairs (ForMENA)
Brussels 15th May 2015