Written By: Faisal Darem
Article Date: May 28, 2012 - 9:46:24 PM
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia announced on Wednesday at a Friends of Yemen donor conference held in Saudi capital, Riyahah, to grant Yemen $ 3.25 billion.
According to the Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal, the amount will provide assistance to the development projects that will be agree upon with the Yemeni side in accordance with the transition plan submitted by the Yemeni government.
Moreover, the aid will support the Yemeni government efforts to increase border security between two countries. However, al-Faisal did not provide further information on how the money will be disbursed.
The Friends affirmed that Yemen is facing multiple challenges in needed to address at once during the conference. The latest developments in political, economic, humanitarian and security fields and to renew the commitment to Yemen were on the panel discussions. This meeting attempts to move forward from supporting the transition process and help Yemen overcome the economic repercussions.
The heads of Delegations and Organizations participating in the 3rd Ministerial Meeting of the Friends of Yemen agreed to adopt concrete steps in the political, economic and security fields within the next ministerial meeting on the sidelines of the General Assembly of the United Nations (UN) on September, 2012.
In conference , the Friends of Yemen has also condemned the horrific terrorist attack that took place in Sana'a on 21 May, and expressed their sincere condolences to the people of Yemen. The Friends confirmed their strong commitment to fighting extremism and the roots causing it.
Moreover, the Friends expressed their full support to the unity, sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Yemen, re-emphasizing their commitment to the principle of non-interference in the internal affairs of Yemen.
A. Political track
National Dialogue: Yemen forms an ad hoc committee to prepare for holding a national dialogue by the end of June 2012. The National Dialogue Conference will be taken place on March 2013. Yemen friends will be obligated to support the political process of Yemen, provide Yemen with technical, logistical and financial assistance as required. They will also encourage all Yemeni factions to show active and effective and full participation in the National Dialogue Conference.
Transitional Justice and National Reconciliation:
Yemen will complete and finalize the transitional justice process and enact the national reconciliation law. Yemen friends will provide technical, logistical and financial support so that the Yemeni government would be able to implement the reconciliatory steps, pay compensations for harmed individuals and rehabilitate the strife-stricken regions.
B. Economic track
Yemen will complete and implement a two-year transitional program for consolidation and development with clear priorities for the coming two years and a general framework for coordinating the international assistance. It will also implement the swift credit framework relating to the IMF. Yemen will cooperate with the IMF to forge long-range credit facilities framework.
Friends of Yemen and international donors will provide support for developmental projects included in the two-year transitional plan according to agreed upon priorities. They will also provide support for developing the capabilities of the country and efforts of governmental coordination. They will also establish a credit fund for all donors in order to review and develop the kinds of support to match reconstruction and development in Yemen.
Friends of Yemen will designate a date to convene the donor consultative group conference as well as the financial support and program for Yemen.
Friends of Yemen will replenish a special fund to tackle the humanitarian crisis that affects millions of Yemenis.
They underscore the importance of the exerted efforts currently going on to support the Yemeni government to deal with the labor workforce and unemployment in the country.
C. Security Track
Reorganization of military and security:
Yemen will complete the necessary steps to restore security and stability, remove tension factors and rebuild the armed and security forces in accordance with the plan which will be completed by December 2012.
Friends are committed to providing technical, logistical and financial support to implement the plan as required.
Fighting against Terrorism and Threats to Public Order:
Yemen will prepare a comprehensive plan to combat Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and regain control of all areas occupied by Al-Qaeda in the country. The security forces will ensure the protection of highways to prevent any further attacks on critical infrastructure, including oil and gas pipelines.
Friends will provide support in the fight against terrorism as well as support for Coast Guard Units to help them face the challenges of Al-Qaeda and piracy.
Reforming Police and the Judiciary:
Yemen will begin implementing reforms of the police and the judiciary.
Friends will provide technical, logistical and financial support for the reform process in Yemen.
The Way Ahead:
Yemen's government will create a secretariat for the Friends of Yemen at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Friends of Yemen thanked the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) for hosting the next Conference of Donors on June 27-30, 2012 and the Ministerial Meeting and agreed to hold next meeting on September 27 and 28 on the sidelines of the sixty-seventh session of the General Assembly of the United Nations.
Al-Faisal urged the brotherly and friendly countries to provide support to Yemen, confirming that Yemen's security and stability is an international responsibility.
The Kingdom welcomes hosting the forthcoming donor meeting proposed to be held on June 27-30, al-Faisal said.
The Prime Minister indicated in his speech to the deteriorating economic situation in Yemen that is burdened by corruption, mismanagement and declined growth rates of all economic sectors.
Basindwa indicated the short-term stability and development plan for 2012 – 2013 aimed revitalizing the country’s economy and stabilizing the security, social, and political situation.
Yemen relies on its brotherly and friendly states and organizations' assistance to finance them to implement the project objectives, he said.
"The economic recovery can only be realized by achieving the country's security and stability, restoring the state's prestige, uniting its institutions' leadership and the success of the comprehensive national dialogue that will address all issues including the Southern issue, Sa'ada wars' repercussions and the political system development," Basindwa said.
He reviewed the accomplished steps under the GCC-brokered initiative, saying "there are some obstacles that are still impeding the procedures to implement the entire power transfer peacefully to the new legitimacy."
He criticized to the escalating terrorist activities of the so-called "Sharia supporters" in the recent months. "What made the situation worse is the division in the armed and security forces and some attempts to disrupt military and security appointments issued by President Abdo Rabbo Mansour Hadi, the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces" He added.
Heads of delegations participating expressed in their speeches the whole international community's commitment to support the efforts of the national reconciliation government and full cooperation with Yemen to eliminate terrorism.
They stressed their keenness to provide all aspects of possible aid to encounter the economic, political and development challenges Yemen faces currently, including the success of the political transition and achieving the desired change that meets the Yemeni people's aspirations.
About 42 brotherly and friendly states and regional and international organizations took part in the meeting, including the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states, the United States, the United Nations and the European Union.
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