Newsletter 8

A report on the overall situation in Yemen cannot be offered at the time being, only on parts of the country in respect of the current political and/or military situation.

Hadramaut and Mahra: no ongoing war, alQaida increasingly gaining control of the security situation, the shore and economy and destroying historical Sufi-sanctuaries and holy tombs in line with Daash practices.

alJauf, Marib, alBeidha, Shabwa: hostilities between troops of the Saudi Allied Forces and mercenaries (tribal people and Yemenis trained and paid by the Allied Forces) and Houthi military organisations. The Saudi Allied Forces have established a base in Safer, Yemen´s energy centre, eagerly endeavouring to heckle Sana´a. Despite their impressive dominance in terms of material and staff no noteworthy progress could so far be achieved but serious losses suffered. Possible reasons therefor are lacking experience and poor motivation of the Saudi troops, divergencies in the command centre (repeated friendly fires), no local knowledge.

Saada, Aaran, Hajja, Sana´a, Sana´a environment, Dhamar, Hodeidah:

From the military point of view occupied by Houthi/Saleh with major counter rebellions of the population only in Hodeidah. Sana´a, Sana´a environment, and Saada are perpetually bombarded by Saudi air raids, the other provinces occasionally. Air raid terror has been going on for six months but very little acts of war on the ground. The population is extremely exasperated and angry with Saudi Arabia, increasingly supporting the Houthis. Since military targets have long been destroyed the air raids attack the infrastructure and civilian areas with the number of victims having soared to at least 2,000, with 500 children among them. No cease fire on Eid alAdha holiday (24th September), the city of Sana´a has become ever more blocked. All bridges leading to the North, West and East were blown up so that supplies of fuel, gas, food and medicine can no longer reach Sana´a, now besieged as Aden before.

Taizz, Ibb: Intensive fighting between Houthis-Saleh militia and “Muqawama”, the local resistance associations. Taizz is extensively destroyed; ferocious, bloody fighting in the streets cause many victims, further aggravated by bombing on the part of the Saudi Allied Forces with many missed targets, destroyed hospitals, very little medical help for the wounded, and alternating “ruling” by the two war parties.

Aden, Lahij, Abyan; alDhale: Following the retreat of the Houthi/Affash militia important acts of war are experienced in alDhale at the border to Ibb only. In Aden the Emirates have taken over, with so far fairly low-key activities, distributing gifts and food for Eid alAdha, arranging dancing performances and attempting to create a pleasant atmosphere. The main streets are decorated with banners showing portraits of the Emirs of Dubai and Abu Dhabi and reading: ”Aden thanks the Emirates for the liberation and the donations”.

On 23rd of September Abdrubbah Mansur Hadi landed with a Saudi aircraft in Aden. He was neither received by representatives for the Emirates nor by primeminister Khaled Bahah who has been in the city for weeks with a group of ministers and has made first attempts at a normalisation. The tensions between Bahah and Hadi can no longer be ignored.

Hadi delivered a festive address with torrents of hatred against the Houthi/Affash and servile thanks to the Saudi coalition. Ex-president Saleh offered a sharp contradiction on his TV channel alJaman aljaum, proclaiming in statesmanlike style national unity against the arch enemy Saudi Arabia. The entire conflict in Yemen, having by now encompassed the whole region, appeared all of a sudden reduced to the battle for power of the arch rivals Saleh and Hadi.

Hadi subsequently visited a power plant in Aden (which resulted in a total breakdown of the power grid) and injured patients at a hospital and also chaired a ministerial meeting, postulating the same items Bahah has been trying for weeks to implement: A Four-Point-Programme consisting of the following measures: care of the injured persons, compensation for the victims´ families, payment of the salaries withheld for three months, integration of Muqawama into the army and the start of reconstruction.

Hadi left Aden on 25th September already to attend the UN plenary assembly and retrospectively issue a licence to the Saudi Allied forces for war crimes and violation of human rights committed. This unleashed a wave of indignation, not only in Yemen but by now in many other countries worldwide which – on the basis of the reports of human rights organizations – ask for a detailed investigation of all war crimes and human rights violation of both the Saudi allied forces and Houthi/Affash .

Hadi´s flying visit to Aden had clearly shown that he no longer meets with   support in Yemen and he only derives his claim from the UN resolutions and not from the Yemeni population. He is, furthermore, accused of having so far jeopardised all peace negotiations, having thus brought further misery to his country. The so-called “pro-Hadi” forces are not only in military terms but also politically a chimera.

Especially disliked is Riadh Yassin, whom Hadi only recently appointed foreign secretary, well known for his tirades of hatred and presumed to have prepared himself for further upgrading (Bahah´s position?) by means of poster campaigns of his own.

The precarious situation in Aden has not gained stability with the presence of the Emirates. The total power breakdown is aggravated by fuel shortage, no gas supplies and attacks – in addition to the arrival of alQaida.

Asir, Jizan, Najran: The three provinces in the Southwest of Saudi Arabia had been Yemeni for hundreds of years and are populated by Ismaili tribes. Hardly noted by the international press the Houthi/Affash keep steadily advancing into Saudi Arabia as “ National Yemeni Army” as they call themselves. With relatively simple equipment they destroy tanks and other military vehicles, have shot down apaches, blown up border watch towers and killed high ranking military officers. They have so far penetrated 80 m of Saudi territory. Since videos of the hostilities (including Saudi border forces taking flight in panic) are regularly shown in the Internet the invasion cannot be hushed up and gives rise to Schadenfreude of many a terror stricken Yemeni, very often neither a follower of the Houthis nor of Saleh …

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