Economic truce.. international crises shorten the path of the United Nations to dismantle the knot in Yemen

English - السبت 22 يناير 2022 الساعة 05:32 م
Aden, NewsYemen:

The International Crisis Group has returned the reasons for the failure of the United Nations mediation efforts to reach a ceasefire agreement in Yemen to the “conflict over control of the country’s economy” between the Houthi militia and the government of Abd Rabbo Mansour Hadi, especially “trade flows and taxes on fuel entering the port.”  Hodeidah on the Red Sea coast.

The International Crisis Group said - in a recent study published on its official website, under the title (Mediating a ceasefire in the economic conflict in Yemen) - that "the economy has become an integral part of the parties' efforts to strengthen their positions and weaken their opponents."

She explained that "in parallel to the ongoing battles in Yemen to control the land, the two parties involved in the war are also involved in battles to control major parts of the country's economy," noting that this economic conflict causes great suffering to civilians.

She pointed out at the same time that the economic conflict fueled the fighting on the fronts and hindered attempts to make peace, stressing that "the diplomats working to stop the war often ignored this issue."

The International Crises saw that Yemen needs an economic ceasefire just as much as it needs a military ceasefire.

She stressed that "the new UN envoy to Yemen must launch a mediation process to identify the main players in the economic conflict and begin laying the groundwork for an economic truce even as the shooting continues."  This is done in coordination with other UN actors.

Yemen is stuck in overlapping priorities that have challenged mediation efforts. In the north, bloody battles for control of the Marib governorate are raging between the internationally recognized government and the Houthi rebels, while the Hadi government is preventing fuel from entering the Houthi-controlled port of Hodeidah.

He pointed out that what he called "a tug of war over the Yemeni riyal" led to its collapse in the cities that are nominally controlled by the government.

He explained that these crises are part of the struggle over the economy - the economic conflict - that has compounded Yemen's humanitarian crisis, accelerated its political and territorial fragmentation, and impeded peacemaking.

The report traces the roots of economic conflict back to Yemen's failed political transition, which began in 2012 and collapsed in the face of the Houthi rebellion in 2014, unleashing seven years of civil war and foreign intervention.

The International Crisis Group pointed out that mediation efforts - so far - tended to deal with economic issues as technical issues or sought to treat them as "confidence-building measures" put in the service of political dialogue.

She stressed that "the new UN envoy should recognize them as being at the core of the conflict and thus negotiate an economic ceasefire at the same time, and in the same way, seek a military truce.

"The economic conflict pits the Hadi government against the Houthi rebels for control of the country's natural resources, trade flows, businesses and markets," she said, adding that "state- and non-state institutions that facilitate or impede trade, such as banks, customs authorities and other regulatory bodies,  In addition to the security services of both sides, supporting roles."

The report traces the roots of the economic conflict to Yemen's failed political transition, which began in 2012 and collapsed in the face of the Houthi rebellion in 2014, unleashing seven years of civil war and foreign intervention.

He pointed out that it has become more intense and more related to the military conflict since the collapse of the "economic truce" during 2016 and 2017, and the division of the Central Bank into two competing authorities in Sana'a and Aden.

He ruled out that the UN envoy to Yemen (Grundberg) could reach a ceasefire, without progress on the economy and addressing economic issues that are fundamentally related to the political actors in the civil war in Yemen.

The International Crisis Group concluded by saying: "After seven years of this brutal conflict, it is time to try to undertake this task, which is already too late to address."