MEPs strongly condemn continuing violence in Yemen and military coup in Myanmar

© European Union 2021 - Source : EP, Michel CHRISTEN Stockshot of the hemicycle of the European Parliament in Strasbourg - Vote by a show of hand© European Union 2021 - Source : EP, Michel CHRISTEN Stockshot of the hemicycle of the European Parliament in Strasbourg - Vote by a show of hand
  • 80 per cent of the population in Yemen needs humanitarian support 
  • Myanmar military has to hand the power back over to elected civil authorities 

Humanitarian aid for Yemen must be increased, MEPs say, and urge the military in Myanmar to immediately reinstate the civilian government.

Parliament condemned in the strongest terms the ongoing violence in Yemen that has, since 2015, “degenerated into the worst humanitarian crisis in the world”. There can be no military solution to the conflict and the crisis can only be resolved sustainably through an inclusive Yemeni-led and Yemeni-owned negotiation process, stress MEPs in a resolution adopted on Thursday by 638 votes for, 12 against and 44 abstentions.

Calling on all parties to facilitate the rapid and unimpeded passage of humanitarian relief and other necessary goods to the population, MEPs point out that nearly 80 per cent of Yemenites— more than 24 million people — need humanitarian support, while 50 000 people are living in famine-like conditions. This figure is expected to triple by mid-2021.

All parties must urgently refrain from starving civilians as a method of warfare, MEPs stress, whilst pushing for targeted measures to be imposed against those taking part in acts that violate international humanitarian law.

Welcoming the EU’s pledge to triple humanitarian help for Yemen in 2021, MEPs urge the European Commission and EU member states to lead international efforts to urgently scale up humanitarian aid.

Myanmar: All those illegally arrested need to be unconditionally released

In a resolution on the situation in Myanmar, MEPs strongly condemn the military coup of 1 February and call on the military (Tatmadaw) to immediately reinstate the civilian government, end the state of emergency, and unconditionally release all those illegally arrested. The result of the general elections of 8 November must be respected and power handed back to the elected civil authorities.

MEPs note in this regard that “despite her failure to adequately condemn the human rights violations against Burmese minorities, Aung San Suu Kyi continues to be the symbol of the Burmese people when it comes to democratic aspirations and ambitions for a more just and democratic future”.

To guarantee the recognition and representation of all ethnic groups in Myanmar including the Rohingya, the new constitution must be drafted and implemented through a free and fair process, MEPs stress.

They welcome the extension of the 2018 EU sanctions against Tatmadaw military and officials responsible for human rights violations against the Rohingya population. and urge the Council to extend targeted sanctions to the entire leadership of Myanmar’s military, including all those involved in the coup.

Finally, Parliament calls upon the EU and its member states to foster international coordination to prevent any unauthorised goods from being illegally exported from Myanmar, specifically benefitting the military economically.

The resolution was adopted by 667 votes for, one against and 27 abstentions.