Riyadh – Saba
Foreign Minister, Dr. Ahmed Awad bin Mubarak, participated today in the conference on mobilizing financing to save the Safer tanker, which was hosted by Britain and the Netherlands, and which aims to raise 29 million dollars to cover the financing gap for the rescue plan, the implementation of the first phase of which will begin with the arrival of the replacement tanker during the current May.
The minister confirmed that the government has been keen since 2016 to highlight the potential danger of the Safer tanker and has made continuous and intensive efforts to mobilize international efforts to avoid the disaster of the Safer tanker by virtue of its responsibility as a government concerned with the safety of the Yemeni environment and the citizen, as well as to fulfill its obligations towards international agreements on environmental safety.
He said, “The government has worked to mobilize a supportive regional and international opinion to support the efforts of the SAFER plans by discussing the file within the framework of the Arab League, the (Persga) Authority, and the Council of Countries Bordering the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, and the Yemeni government has approved all proposals submitted to address the status of the tanker, starting with the proposal submitted from the former envoy of the Secretary-General Martin Griffiths in June 2020 and the proposal submitted by the UNOPS office in November 2020, which were rejected and procrastinated by the terrorist Houthi militia, and ending with the current plan submitted by the UNDP in April 2022. Bin Mubarak added, “We are fully aware that it was possible to resolve the issue of the Safer tanker years ago and at a lower cost, had it not been for the Houthi militia putting obstacles and practicing political blackmail against all proposed solutions.
What matters to us today is the implementation of the rescue plan according to what was agreed upon, and that the government has completed the signing all the legal documents necessary for the project to replace the Safer tanker, and provided $5 million to support the budget for the rescue plan, despite the difficult circumstances that Yemen is going through and the scarcity of government funding sources.
The minister expressed his aspiration that the conference would come out with sufficient resources to bridge the financing gap for the project plan and save the Red Sea, the marine environment and the international navigation corridor from the danger ahead, and called on the executing authorities to adhere to strict environmental requirements in the rescue operation in accordance with local and international laws and legislation.