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“All human beings are born free and equal

in dignity and rights.”

- Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Humanitarian Crisis in Yemen

Date: 
Thursday, November 17, 2016 - 10:00am
Location: 
2200 Rayburn House Office Building

Announcement

Please join the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission for a hearing on the humanitarian crisis in Yemen, and the options and dilemmas confronting policymakers concerned with civilian protection.

A year and a half after the escalation of conflict between the northern Yemeni Houthi movement in alliance with forces still loyal to former President Ali Abdullah Saleh, and an international Coalition led by Saudi Arabia seeking to restore the government of President Abed Rabbo Mansour al Hadi, with support from the United States government, the humanitarian situation in Yemen continues to deteriorate. Before the outbreak of conflict, the country already faced a protracted crisis characterized by widespread poverty, food insecurity, poor governance, and weak rule of law, including widely reported human rights violations. The escalation has amplified that crisis, as the parties to the conflict have failed to take adequate steps to protect civilians or fulfill their obligations under international humanitarian law.

Since the collapse of a cessation of hostilities in August of 2016, Yemenis have endured near-daily attacks on civilians, civilian institutions and public infrastructure. In August, the Coalition inadvertently bombed an MSF-supported health facility and school in Sa’ada. In October, a Coalition attack on a funeral gathering in Sana’a left at least 140 people dead and 550 injured. Houthi-Saleh forces have indiscriminately shelled Taizz and other locations, as well as towns and installations inside Saudi Arabia, reportedly using ballistic missiles. Armed Houthi and Saleh forces routinely intimidate, delay and harass humanitarian workers. More than 3 million people are internally displaced, and Yemen is at risk of famine: over 14 million people are food insecure.

Witnesses will discuss the strategic environment in which the conflict is taking place, update the humanitarian situation as it has been exacerbated by the conflict, and offer recommendations to ensure civilian protection.

This hearing will be open to members of Congress, congressional staff, the interested public, and the media. The hearing will be livestreamed via YouTube on the Commission website, https://humanrightscommission.house.gov/. For any questions, please contact Kimberly Stanton (for Mr. McGovern) at 202-225-3599 or Kimberly.Stanton@mail.house.gov or Carson Middleton (for Mr. Pitts) at 202-225-2411 or Carson.Middleton@mail.house.gov.  

James P. McGovern, M.C.
Co-Chairman, TLHRC
Joseph R. Pitts, M.C.
Co-Chairman, TLHRC

Witnesses

Panel I

  • Representative of the U.S. State Department (invited)

Panel II

  • James E. Jeffrey, Philip Solondz Distinguished Fellow, Washington Institute
  • Scott Paul, Senior Policy Advisor, Oxfam USA
  • Michael Bowers, Vice President for Humanitarian Policy and Practice, Mercy Corps
  • Krista Zimmerman, Associate Director for International Humanitarian Policy, Save the Children
  • Sunjeev Bery, Advocacy Director, MENA, Amnesty International USA (AIUSA)

Bios [PDF]

Opening remarks

Rep. James P. McGovern, Opening Remarks [PDF]
Rep. Ted Lieu, Opening Remarks [PDF]

Testimonies

James E. Jeffrey, Humanitarian Crisis in Yemen [PDF]
Scott Paul, Humanitarian Crisis in Yemen [PDF]
Michael Bowers, Humanitarian Crisis in Yemen [PDF]
Krista Zimmerman, Humanitarian Crisis in Yemen [PDF]
Sunjeev Bery, Humanitarian Crisis in Yemen [PDF]

Transcript

Forthcoming.

Video

114th Congress