On Monday September 9th, British Foreign Minister for Middle East Affairs, Alistair Burt held a press conference in the British ambassador’s residence to discuss Britain’s role in supporting Yemen and the National Dialogue Conference (NDC).
Minister Alistair Burt said that his visit to Yemen was intended to support Dialogue and its decisions. Burt expressed his views that the Dialogue represented an incredible effort by Yemen and offered his further encouragement, recognizing that the work of the NDC was not easy.
During the press conference, Burt noted that he had spoken with all of the NDC’s political members and had found a consensus on the importance of both maintaining public interest in the work of the Conference as well as reaching a final solution to Yemen’s conflicts through dialogue
Burt also announced that the UK would continue to support Yemen both financially and materially through a development program to be implemented over the next three years worth $ 300 million. The UK would also continue to support the fight against terrorism and al-Qaeda in Yemen.
On this latter point, Burt confirmed that his country works closely with Yemeni intelligence to eliminate al-Qaeda through both artistic and technical means. “We must understand that Yemen is fighting terrorism on behalf of all of us,” he said.
The British Foreign Minister for Middle East Affairs further stated that he looks forward to participating in the Yemen Friends meeting that will be held in New York this month to support Yemen and the fulfillment of the commitments made by donor countries.
“This meeting will reveal the seriousness of the tangible developments in Yemen, especially with regard to political and economic reforms,” Burt said.
Before his press conference, the Minister met with President Hadi and discussed the work of the NDC members as well as his hope that the NDC would end with a satisfactory conclusion.
In the press conference, Burt said that the UK would not interfere in any way with the outcomes of the Conference. “Yemenis will make the decisions and the UK will support them.”