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Oral Statement by Mwatana During the Human Rights Council 36th Session

Mwatana's advocacy consultant delivered an oral statement during the Council's 36th session
©UN Photo/Pierre Albouy
Thu - (14 Sep 2017) - Issues

Mwatana’s advocacy consultant, Salma Amer, delivered an oral statement at the Human Rights Council during its thirty-sixth session. Amer emphasized the dire humanitarian and human rights situation in Yemen and called on the Council to support the establishment of an independent international investigation into violations in Yemen.

Below is the text of the statement:

UN Human Rights Council: Thirty-Sixth Session,

Agenda Item 2 – General Debate, Update by the High Commissioner for Human Rights

Oral Intervention: Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies

12 September, 2017

Delivered by: Ms. Salma Amer


Mr. President,

I speak on behalf of Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies and Mwatana for Human Rights. My name is Salma Amer and I work for Mwatana, which is a Yemeni human rights organization.

For the third year in a row the UN High Commissioner has urged this Council to ensure the establishment of an international independent investigation into violations of human rights and humanitarian law in Yemen.

Some states have responded to this call by proposing or supporting a resolution to do just that this session.

The stakes could not be higher. According to the UN OHCA, Yemen is the largest humanitarian crisis in the world, and as recently noted by the High Commissioner the situation is an “entirely man-made catastrophe.”

The bombing of schools and medical facilities, the sieges, the blocking of humanitarian aid and other wide-spread violations of international law are directly responsible for more than 18 million civilians in Yemen needing urgent humanitarian assistance.

More than 7 million civilians are on the brink of famine. According to the Red Cross, an epidemic of cholera could infect up to 600,000 people in Yemen by the end of this year.  The fate of tens of millions of civilians hangs in the balance. 

With the world watching, member states of the Council, including the United States and the United Kingdom, have a momentous choice to make this session. Support efforts to establish an independent international investigation in Yemen or refuse and risk the lives and well-being of millions of innocent people in favor of impunity. The choice is yours. It is a choice that will be felt beyond this Council and for years to come.

Will you crush hope for a better future in Yemen or champion it?

Thank you Mr. President

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