Yemeni civilians are hunger for global responsibility… don’t let them die.

“Earthchild”, Christian Martin Weiss

Its much more than a humanitarian crisis or a civil war but the systemic violation of Human Rights that is driven 27 million victims into a disempowered abysm of starvation, torture and diseases.

22.2 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance.

15.7 million lack access to safe water and adequate sanitation.

7.8 million are food insecure.

4.8 million lack access to basic healthcare. 2.9 million children and women are acutely malnourished.

*Source: ICRC

By the contrary of what it supposes is not just of regional dimension but also of global nature and responsibility. For many reasons:

1.- A global legal framework: Universal Declaration of Human Rights/Sustainable Development Goals/IHL. Most of their principles are systematically violated.

2.-A humanitarian crisis . The blockade from Saudi coalition of goods and aid has created one of the most devastating aid crises in the world.

3.- A Migration crisis. A massive movement of people that contributes to a global migration crisis without a clear agreement of distribution or/and protection for the civilians that remains in the country.

4.- Responsibility from external actors to the conflict. The failures of the Saudi coalition and of those countries that have supported them by selling arms are badly contributing to build peace. Spain is one of those countries and must change its focus. Even if the arms business is not illegal when it drives 22 million people to depend on humanitarian aid, clearly goes against a Human Rights framework.

From any perspective, Yemen becomes a conflict that belongs to the global community.

The Sustainable Development Goals represents the commitment to act, the Universal Declaration of Human rights the guarantor of minimum standards for Yemenis civilians and finally the Security Council is the organism in charge of making it happen. Is on it own goals to issue: “ceasefire directives that can help prevent an escalation of the conflict, dispatch military observers or a peacekeeping force to help reduce tensions, separate opposing forces and establish a calm in which peaceful settlements may be sought. May opt for enforcement measures including: economic sanctions, arm embargoes, financial penalties and restrictions and travel bans, severance of diplomatic relations or blockade..”*

It becomes a humanitarian crisis of uncontrollable magnitude that should be addressed by a reshaped of the aid sector. The incapacity to access or low rates of performance is not only driven by the blockade of the Coalition but also for the own role of the sector that is not innovative enough to keep its competences despite the emergency. Indeed, emergencies are not the same within almost no respect to IHL. Is for this main reason that “rules of war “doesn’t apply and tech and war in cities are pushing for humanitarian innovation. The first attempt for changing is in relation to technological advances on the delivering of aid, although is not enough and a boost on the role of the sector is a must for becoming resilient in the most important aspect: direct presence on the field.

Its important to take into account that shortage of resources is not exactly the problem but the own delivering and access to victims. Currently, 80% of the Yemeni population relies on humanitarian aid.

 The humanitarian sector should not be politicized but fully involved in conflicts;“being political” in current humanitarian aid chaos is not the same as “being ideologically” part of one side of the conflictA Mediator position it’s also a political position in which certain rules are above the own conflict.*

Is it not about a failure on solidarity but on Diplomacy management by applying sanctions from global organizations and making of humanitarian aid an essential pillar out of any Negotiation.

Civilians are not part of the conflict. An absolutely basic of IHL that surprisingly becomes almost a “precious gift” in Yemen chaotic reality.

Global migration crisis. Yemen its part of this “modern humanitarian tragedy” of war in cities, unrestricted attacks to civilians and no respect to IHL. Forcing millions of people to flee their homes without a certain destiny and above all without rights and legal status. They’re all refugees with or without acknowledgement and all of them hold the right to be hosted or/and the right to be protected in their own country.

Direct and indirect complicity from external actors

Even if it seems that the government and Houthis are the real “actors” the complexity of this conflict is extended because of the intervention of external actors -inside and outside- the region.

The Saudi coalition has failed on its mission and the rules of the game needs to be changed towards a new roadmap. Under current reactions from the global community it’s imperative for Saudi Arabia to leave aside their differences –particularly after Jamal Khashoggi case- and settle political relations with countries as Iran; seeing with vision a sort of pseudo-partner able to deliver stability to the region. The complicity of Iran is an asset for resolution of conflicts, an added value…. at least for Yemen crisis.

We are witness that even if a ceasefire is consolidates; the devastation of the country is irreversible and will take decades to gain safety and protection to civilians. So, to move forward for humanitarian aid purposes, the conflict is demanding a new “kaleidoscope” of solutions.

After US removes its support to Saudi coalition by Senate vote -56-41 votes- we start a new historical stage that means simply that the conflict comes to an inflection point in which the Coalition has not international support. No matter which businesses are on stake. The flagrant violation of Human Rights and the increasing level of devastation forces to divert the direction.

Even if the arm business is legal and a source of profits for many countries, when it becomes a flagrant and systemic violation of Human Rights to the point that 27 million people are starving to death, living under infrahuman conditions or having no access to health services, water or Education, it means that is not a legal business any more. At least not for Yemen, and also for the specific goals from the Saudi Coalition.

Is it also clear that one of the most important goals for achieving sustainability is SDG 16: Partnerships, that before Sweden talks, it has been used wrongly to create a blockade against civilian´s safety not on a positive and healthy way of conflict resolutions.

As we have had a successful Paris Agreement on climate change we also need a Yemen Agreement at global level in which leaders, organizations and citizens claim and act to stop this barbaric stage of extreme suffering.

Yemen is literally dying and the global community must act fast and effectively to stop part of this tragedy. US has been one of the best partners of the Saudi coalition, although is being aware of the magnitude of the crisis and has shown sense of responsibility by ending their support and radically change their relationship. A model to follow suit by countries as Spain that still keeps the some status quo.

The world cannot afford more slaughter and suffering, particularly when there are other countries outside of the conflict that are actively participating.

In Yemen there is hunger…. for global responsibility and urgent action. Don´t let Yemeni population die!

Towards a Global Yemen Agreement. GO!

*Security Council, UN

*”Earthchild”, Christian Martin Weiss by George Redhawk GIF

*Why the humanitarian sector should not be politicised but fully involved in armed conflicts. Reshaping Neutrality


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