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(Ottawa, Ontario November 5 & December 7, 2011)   


Coinciding with the formation of the new National Reconciliation Government and the scheduled presidential elections for February 21, 2012, the concept of federalism for Yemen has become a timely and relevant model to consider in the restructuring of the future of the country.

In a country that is as complex and diverse as Yemen, a smooth transition into modern society can best be attained through a structure incorporating fairness, sensitivity and flexibility. With this in mind, devolution of power, disseminated over a framework of cooperatively autonomous regions, could strengthen the way of unity, stability and prosperity. The current unrest has been deeply aggravated by a centralized government which has been viewed with resentment and scepticism.

To this end, HE Khaled Bahah has held meetings with President & CEO of the Forum of Federations, Mr. Rupak Chattopadhyay and his senior advisors. The Ambassador has extended an invitation to the Forum of Federations (www.forumfed.org) to visit Yemen in February 2012, where the first National Conference on Federalism will be held from February 28 – March 1, organized by the Hadramaut National Council, the Hadramout University and other members of the civil society (www.fedyemen.com).

Initiatives are underway for the Forum to send representatives to the Conference and to promote awareness of federalism and its many different forms that are adopted around the world. The Forum’s objective is to work with partners within Yemen, advancing understanding of federal system in discussing the political future of Yemen, and to assist political decision-makers; academics and civil society in assessing the strengths and weaknesses of various federal concepts in order to develop a definitive model specific to the needs and situation of Yemen.

A further purpose would be to enable the people of Yemen to consider the concept of this option in the drafting of the new Yemeni constitution, and, if appropriate, to assist in this process. The Forum would also deem it necessary to participate in the capacity-building process for the on-going education of politicians, officials, academics, members of civil society and media in all aspects of the mechanism of democratic federalism in Yemen.

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