Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Feierstein on international community's role in Yemen

The leading role played by the international community was spelled out by US ambassador Gerald Feierstein in an interview with Al-Sharq al-Awsat:

“We hope that the dialogue will begin after the feast of Ramadan. The second point is to prepare for the national referendum and the elections. This consists of several steps. The Gulf initiative authorised the government to form a higher committee for the elections and the referendum. We are in contact with the government to encourage it to do so. We are also learning about the opinions of the political leaders on this subject. After that, we review and update the voters' register. The international group is ready to work closely with the higher elections and referendum committee to offer assistance in this regard. I hope we will begin this process in September so we will have enough time to prepare a credible voters' register.

“The constitutional amendments or drawing up a draft of the new constitution is another aspect of the second transitional phase. This will be the result of the national dialogue. I hope that the draft of the new constitution will be ready at the beginning of next year so it can be ratified in the general referendum. We also mention the work related to the restructuring of the armed forces and the security forces. We are working to finalise this with a number of institutions in the defence ministry and the interior ministry, and we are satisfied with what has been accomplished.

“Our impression regarding the articles of the Gulf initiative that have been accomplished is extremely positive. We are on the right road to accomplish many more of the resolutions of the initiative within the set deadlines until the end of the transitional phase by the beginning of February 2014.”

For more news and expert analysis about Yemen, please see Yemen Focus.

© 2012 Menas Associates

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