The Heads of Mission of the European Union to Yemen are deeply disturbed by the events and loss of life related to the fire in the overcrowded Immigration, Passports and Naturalization Authority (IPNA) Holding Facility in Sana’a on 7 March 2021.
The EU Heads of Mission call upon the de facto authorities to grant immediate access to humanitarian organisations, including the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), to all sites and hospitals where survivors have been transferred.
The EU Heads of Mission call for an immediate external, independent investigation into the incident, and for accountability and redress to the victims and their families. As evidence of the direct cause and sequence of events leading up to the fire is being established, the EU Heads of Mission note the disturbing reports on the role of security personnel. The deadly outcome is linked to the appalling conditions in which migrants are being held in the centre, for which the de facto authorities in Sana’a are responsible. The EU Heads of Mission call on the de facto authorities in Sana’a to close the centre in its current form, and to improve their co-operation with IOM and other humanitarian organisations.
The EU Heads of Mission reiterate that migrants face critical humanitarian and protection needs, and remind all parties of the need to ensure humane conditions for migrants in accordance with international Human Rights law and standards. The EU Heads of Mission call on all actors and authorities in Yemen to cease the practices of arbitrary arrest, detention and forced transfer of migrants in Yemen.