Minister Coveney and Minister of State Cannon join calls for the international community to support the people of Yemen.
Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Mr Simon Coveney, T.D., and Minister of State for the Diaspora and International Development, Ciarán Cannon, T.D., have joined calls for the international community to support the people of Yemen. The heads of three United Nations agencies – UNICEF, the World Food Programme and the World Health Organisation – visited Yemen last week and issued an urgent call to the international community to redouble their efforts to respond.
Minister Coveney said:
‘The people of Yemen are in the midst of a humanitarian catastrophe. The current outbreak of cholera is a tragic development in what is already the world’s largest humanitarian crisis.
The situation in Yemen is entirely man-made, brought about by the ongoing conflict which has destroyed infrastructure and cut off much of the population from food and other supplies. The people of Yemen are dying from hunger and disease every day and there can be no end to their suffering while the conflict continues. The international community must work together to bring an end to this conflict and ensure that the people of Yemen receive the assistance they urgently need. Ireland commends the efforts of UN Special Envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed and his team, who continue to work towards a peace agreement that is acceptable to all parties to the conflict.’
Minister Coveney went on to say:
‘I urge the parties to the conflict to ensure that vitally needed food and medical supplies are facilitated with access for those who need them. Ports must remain open to humanitarian organisations and humanitarian access across the country must be respected.’
Minister of State Cannon added:
‘The cholera outbreak in Yemen is an extremely worrying development in an already critical crisis. Access by the Yemeni people to adequate healthcare, proper sanitation and a safe, sufficient, clean water supply is crucial if lives are to be saved. The international community must support organisations who can provide these services on the ground. Ireland has fulfilled its pledge of €4 million in funding to the crisis in Yemen for 2017 and I would urge other donors to also fulfil their pledges urgently.’
Since 2012, Ireland has provided €11.2 million in humanitarian assistance to Yemen, including €4million in assistance this year.
02 August 2017
Notes for the editor:
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