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Yemeni Government Accuses UN Coordination Office of 'Violating International Norms'

Yemeni Government Accuses UN Coordination Office of 'Violating International Norms'

Monday, 17 September, 2018 - 12:30
Lise Grande, the UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq, speaks during an interview with Reuters in Erbil, Iraq October 13, 2016. (Reuters)

The Yemeni government has criticized the signing of a memorandum of understanding by the United Nations with Houthi militias to airlift the wounded, describing it as a “blatant defiance of international law” and a violation of diplomatic norms. The MOU marks a remarkable development in the relationship between United Nations organizations operating in Yemen and the Houthi insurgents.

Under the new memorandum between the Houthis, who seized power by force, and the UN humanitarian coordinator Lise Grande, critically ill patients will be flown out of Yemen for treatment through scheduled United Nations flights as of Tuesday, for a period of six months.

"Yemeni Minister of Information Muammar al-Iryani said that the international community had considered the militias as coupists against the country’s legitimacy. “This is what was stated in Resolution 2216, which clearly described the crisis as between a constitutional government and coupists,” he stated, questioning the objectives of the United Nations with this recent MOU, which contravenes international diplomatic and legal norms.

In remarks to Asharq Al-Awsat, Iryani said that the memorandum was “an alternative means to save terrorists, Houthi leaders, and experts who were used by the Houthis under the pretext of critical situations.”

He stressed that the Yemeni government would not hesitate under any circumstances to carry out its duties to protect the interests of the Yemeni people and adopt the appropriate measures.

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