China’s permanent representative to the United Nations described “political settlement” as the only way out of the conflict in Yemen.
“The current situation in Yemen is not favorable. The international community must step up its efforts to push for an early breakthrough in the political settlement of the Yemeni issue,” said Zhang Jun, China’s permanent representative to the United Nations, CGTN reported.
China supports the search for a solution to the Yemeni problem from the three aspects of a nationwide cease-fire, economic and humanitarian measures, and comprehensive political negotiations, he told the Security Council on Tuesday.
The Chinese envoy said parties to the conflict should stop violence and improve the security situation on the ground.
“The international community must remain committed to a political settlement and continue to promote good offices and mediation. The humanitarian situation in Yemen should be improved and humanitarian access guaranteed”.
Meanwhile, UN Undersecretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Mark Lowcock warned that the humanitarian crisis in Yemen has never been worse on same day.
“Famine is again on the horizon. Conflict is again escalating. The economy is again in tatters. Humanitarian agencies are again nearly broke,” Lowcock told the Security Council in a briefing. “And then the new problems: COVID-19 is spreading out of control, and we have the sorry saga of the Safer tanker.”
Lowcock warned that funding for the aid operations in Yemen is on the verge of collapse.
The United Nations and partners used to provide food to 13 million hungry people every month in Yemen. Because of funding cuts, only five million of those people are still getting full rations. Eight million have had their rations cut in half. Similar cuts are affecting millions of people who rely on aid for water, health care and other needs, he said.
Aid organizations have so far received about 18 percent of what is needed for this year’s humanitarian response plan, he said.
Yemen’s economy is in free fall with rising prices and fuel shortages, said Lowcock.
Fuel is another key determinant of basic commodity prices. Fuel is needed to distribute goods around the country, pump drinking water and power basic services. In June, only 8,100 metric tons of commercial fuel imports reached Hudaydah, by far the lowest amount ever recorded, said Lowcock.
Saudi Arabia and a number of its regional allies launched a devastating war on Yemen in March 2015 in an attempt to subdue an uprising that toppled a regime friendly to Riyadh.
The US-based Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED), a nonprofit conflict-research organization, estimates that the war has claimed more than 100,000 lives over the past five years.
More than half of Yemen’s hospitals and clinics have been destroyed or closed during the war by the Saudi-led coalition, which is supported militarily by the UK, the US and other Western countries.