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OSESGY Meets with Yemeni Community Leaders through Sana’a Center Peacebuilding Initiative

اقرأ المحتوى باللغة العربية

On March 5, a series of meetings concluded which gathered diplomats, representatives of the UN Office of the Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for Yemen (OSESGY), and members from the Strategic Thinking Groups (STGs) representing four key Yemeni governorates.

The meetings were organized under the project “Exploring Alternative Methodologies for Peace in Yemen,” implemented by the Sana’a Center for Strategic Studies in partnership with Saferworld and funded by the British Foreign Office. Discussions were held over the course of six days, in Amman, Jordan, as part of a bid to shape international policies on peacebuilding in Yemen.

Over 25 participants, including Sarhad Fatah, Deputy Head of Mission at the UN OSESGY Office, and Chris Bold, the Deputy British Ambassador to Yemen, representatives from the Envoy’s Office, and delegates from the Dutch and Swedish Embassies, and a representative from the World Bank convened to review policy shaping local initiatives that promote inter-governorate dialogues and communal peace. The delegates also discussed the impact of recent military escalations in the Red Sea shipping lanes on Yemen’s fragile peace process and local economies.

Discussions covered crucial political, economic, and security developments within the governorates of Al-Mahra, Hadramawt, Shabwa, and Marib, emphasizing the continued need for local perspectives and bottom-up approaches to peacebuilding.

Yasmeen Al-Eryani, Co-Executive Director for Knowledge Production at the Sana’a Center, highlighted the workshop’s importance in amplifying the voices of local communities and fostering a deeper understanding of local issues among international stakeholders. She stated, “This event is a unique example of steady and long-term dialogue between local communities and international actors, contributing to a more nuanced understanding of the evolving challenges Yemen faces.”

This workshop marks the third phase of activities implemented by the “Exploring Alternative Methodologies for Peace” project. Since the project’s inception in 2018, its unique approach to peacebuilding has resulted in several significant improvements to daily life in the four governorates where it operates. The program was instrumental in establishing Al-Mahra University, the first public University in Al-Mahra, our team worked tirelessly to re-open roads connecting Shabwa to Marib, advocated for the launch of an early warning operations center, and improved the quality of life in the Hadramawt prison. More recently, at the local level, the program resolved conflicts between fisherfolk and updated fishing regulations in Al Mahra, restored community trust in the judiciary system in Shabwa by drafting new commitments, and brought farmers together to discuss climate concerns in the agricultural sector in Marib. Each of these initiatives has a profoundly stabilizing effect on communities in Yemen.

The Sana’a Center for Strategic Studies is an independent think tank that seeks to foster change through knowledge production, with a focus on Yemen and the surrounding region. The Center’s publications and programs, offered in Arabic and English, cover political, social, economic, and security developments, aiming to impact policy locally, regionally, and internationally.

Saferworld is an independent organization that focuses on resolving conflicts, finding ways to strengthen the role of local governments in serving their communities, and increasing local organizations’ participation in the peace process in Yemen.