Minister for the Middle East statement on Iranian involvement in Yemen

10 Nov 2017 01:47 PM

Alistair Burt expresses UK concern about the provision of ballistic missiles to Houthis.

On 6 November the Saudi-led Coalition released a statement providing details of Iranian support to the Houthis in Yemen, including via the provision of ballistic missiles. The UK has had longstanding concerns about Iranian involvement in Yemen, which we have raised with the Iranian government. The provision of weapons to the Houthis and forces aligned to former President Saleh is contrary to UN Security Council Resolutions.

Alistair Burt, Minister for the Middle East, said:

There is a critical need to end the conflict in Yemen which has created the world’s most serious humanitarian crisis and poses risks to regional security and stability.

I am deeply concerned by reports that Iran has provided the Houthis with ballistic missiles, which threaten regional security and prolong the conflict. It is essential that the UN investigates these reports. The UK Government condemned the Houthi missile attack on Riyadh on 4 November, which deliberately targeted a civilian area and was intercepted over an international airport.

There remains a desperate need for a political solution to the Yemen conflict to help end the suffering of the Yemeni people, counter destabilising interference and end attacks upon neighbouring countries. The UK will continue to work towards a political settlement, and we call upon all countries in the region to support that goal. We will also continue to support our partners in the region to protect themselves against security threats.

Notes to editors

The UK is playing a leading role in the humanitarian response as the 3rd largest humanitarian donor to Yemen and the 2nd largest donor to the UN appeal. We have increased our UK aid for Yemen to £155 million for 2017/18 and are pressing the international community to step up its efforts.

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