Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today welcomed the official launch of the preparatory process for the national dialogue conference in Yemen, his spokesperson said today.
“The national dialogue will be an opportunity for all actors in Yemen to collectively establish a new social contract and achieve national reconciliation,” Mr. Ban’s spokesperson added in a statement.
Yemen has been undergoing a democratic transition, under the leadership of President Abdrabuh Mansour Hadi Mansour, who came to power in an election in February. This followed an agreement signed by warring factions in November 2011 on a transitional settlement in the wake of widespread protests similar to those seen across the Middle East and North Africa, and the resignation of former president Ali Abdullah Saleh.
The outcome of the national dialogue conference will feed into the constitution-making process that is to conclude in late 2013, enabling general elections to take place in February 2014.
Mr. Mansour has appointed a representative preparatory committee tasked with preparing the ground for the conference; and Mr. Ban commended him, as well as the Government and people of Yemen, for “their determination to keep the transition process on track,” the spokesperson said.
He also noted that Mr. Ban’s Special Adviser on Yemen, Jamal Benomar, has just concluded a two-week mission to the country during which he engaged with all Yemeni sides to support preparations for the national dialogue and other transition tasks.
The UN has been providing support in Yemen’s transition in four key areas: political facilitation; technical support; capacity-building; and a public information and awareness campaign.