The conflict in Yemen: causes, main stages, consequences

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The conflict in Yemen: causes, main stages, consequences
The conflict in Yemen: causes, main stages, consequences

The conflict in Yemen is not as widely known as military operations in Syria or Iraq. Although it was a full-scale civil war that lasted for several years. At the end of 2018, it became known that a truce had been reached, but then the clashes resumed again. This article will focus on the causes of the conflict, its main stages and the impact of this bloody war on world politics.


The situation in Yemen

The conflict in Yemen was preceded by a Shiite insurgency. It all started in 2004. Shiite rebels living in the north of the country opposed Yemen's alliance with the US authorities. They called for the restoration of the theocratic monarchy that existed in North Yemen before the military coup that took place in 1962.

In 2009, active hostilities began. On the one hand, Shiites participated in them, and on the other hand, the armies of Saudi Arabia and Yemen. Forintervention in the conflict by the armed forces of a neighboring country controlled by the Sunni government, the formal reason was the murder of two border guards who were victims of the rebels.

Already in 2010, a truce was signed, but then armed clashes resumed.

History of Yemen

Causes of the conflict in Yemen

Initially, the territory on which this country was located was considered one of the oldest centers of civilization. It was here that the ancient states of Main, Kataban, the Himyarite kingdom and many others were located. To understand the causes of the conflict in Yemen, you need to delve deeper into the history of the state.

At the beginning of the VI century, Yemen was under the influence of the Aksumite kingdom, which even led to its Christianization. In 628, the Islamic conquest took place. Then the rule of the Ottoman Empire was established here.

The modern history of the country begins in 1918, when North Yemen gained independence. In 1962, Prince Muhammad al-Badr became the ruler, who took the throne after the death of King Ahmed. The change of power was used by the military, who carried out a coup in the country. The ruling theocratic monarchy was overthrown and the Yemeni Arab Republic proclaimed in its place. After the overthrow of the monarchy in the country, a civil war began between the Republicans and royalists, which lasted 8 years.

South Yemen, which was a British protectorate, gained independence in 1967. Its leadership leaned towards the Soviet Union. For 20 yearsa fierce struggle continued between the countries, which ended in 1990. This is an important date in the history of Yemen, as both states united into one republic.

True, peace and tranquility did not last long. In 1994, a civil war began again in the country. The leaders of the former South Yemen declared independence, but the "northerners" prevented their attempt to secede by crushing the rebellion.

The course of the conflict

History of the conflict

The next round of the history of the conflict in Yemen began after the uprising of the Houthis, who felt the strength to return the previously existing theocratic monarchy.

By July 2014, the landmark battle for Amran ended, it was a landslide victory. The fighting in Yemen then flared up with renewed vigor, as the rebels felt their strength. In September, in just 5 days, the Ansarallah paramilitary group captured the capital Sana.

By that time, the situation in Yemen was aggravated to the limit. Throughout the country, the Houthis staged mass demonstrations. They called for open opposition to the cuts in subsidies for petroleum products by the authorities, which led to a doubling of gasoline prices. The main demand was the resignation of the government, which was openly accused of corruption.

September in the history of the conflict in Yemen went down in history as the month when security forces clashed violently with protesters in the capital Sana'a. The resistance of the power structures was finally broken in two days. The rebels occupied a number of areascapitals, set up roadblocks throughout the city, settled on the territory of state institutions.

On January 18, the presidential office was seized. The next day, photos of Yemen flew around all the news agencies. As a result of an armed clash between members of the security service of the President of the Republic Abdul Hadi and the Houthis, 9 people were killed and more than 60 were injured.

After the presidential palace was occupied by the rebels, a member of the political council of the anti-government movement Ansar Allah, Hamza al-Houthi, announced that the rebels did not aim to overthrow the incumbent president. Nevertheless, clashes with units of the personal presidential guard were provoked by the servicemen themselves. Allegedly, they refused to transfer weapons from the arsenals located on the territory of the complex of the palace of the head of state to the rebels. They were going to keep it for themselves.


On January 21, 2015, Yemeni President Hadi reached a tentative ceasefire agreement with the Houthis. Official information about the agreement between the parties was published. It implied the adoption of a new constitution that would turn Yemen into a federal state. It was also obligated to represent different groups of the population at all levels of government, including allowing the Houthis to rule the country.

The rebels agreed to retreat from government facilities occupied by them, to release prisoners, including the head of the presidential office, Ahmad Mubarak.

The next morning news agencies came out withanother shocking news: Yemeni President Hadi wrote a letter of resignation. However, Parliament refused to approve it. Earlier it was reported that members of the government addressed the head of state with a request for resignation. The Revolutionary Committee, composed of the Houthis, became a temporary body in the country.

In mid-February, the rebels began to storm Aden. The president managed to escape after spending about a month under house arrest. After meeting with the leaders of the country's southern provinces, he officially announced the withdrawal of his own resignation letter.

Saudi intervention

Armed conflict in Yemen

A new round of armed conflict in Yemen began after the coalition forces of Arab states led by Saudi Arabia invaded the country at the end of February 2015. By August, the invaders had gained a foothold in the southern provinces, starting to move north with battles. The basis of the coalition was the units of the armed forces of the United Arab Emirates, as well as the infantry of the "People's Committees", which acted on the side of President Hadi.

In the world media reporting on the armed conflict in Yemen, dozens of armored vehicles were reported in the province of Lahj. In March, the battle for Aden began. The Arab coalition made an attempt to dislodge the Houthis who occupied the city, which she successfully succeeded. By August, control of Aden had completely passed to the forces supporting the incumbent president. The provinces of Ad-Dali, Aden, Lahj and Abyan also came under the control of the coalition.

From September toThe Arab coalition was joined by Kuwait, which began the mass dispatch of its troops to participate in the conflict in Yemen against the Houthis.

In May 2016, the Americans joined the fighting. They sent helicopters and special forces to Lahj province. A detachment of ground troops also arrived at the request of the government of the United Arab Emirates to support the Saudi coalition. In America itself, the main emphasis was on the fact that troops are sent to fight against international terrorists, including the Al-Qaeda organization (a terrorist organization banned in the Russian Federation). The US Air Force took an active part in the military conflict in Yemen, starting to strike at terrorists.

The positions of the Houthis received significant damage. In the middle of 2016. The United Arab Emirates has officially announced the withdrawal of troops from the conflict zone in Yemen.

The denouement came in 2018. In April, UAE special forces landed on the island of Socotra, capturing it. On the archipelago they did not have any resistance. In June, a coalition led by Saudi Arabia launched an offensive against the city of Hodeidah. On the second attempt, he was taken by storm.

In December, the US Senate called for an end to the military campaign in Yemen. The corresponding resolution was supported by the senators.

It is known that the head of the political council of the Houthis, Mahdi Al-Mashat, sent an official telegram to the Russian government in mid-2018 asking them to take part in resolving the conflict. As a result, it was decided not to interfere in another war in the MiddleEast.

Murder of Saleh

Impact on world politics

In 2017, a major scandal erupted in Yemen, in the center of which was former President Ali Abdullah Saleh. He led the country from 1994 to 2011. Was the first head of the republic.

The reason was his speech, in which Saleh accused the Houthis of massacres of civilians. He also stated that he would no longer provide them with any support because of this. Saleh's proposal was to "turn a new page in the history" of Yemen. He believed that it was necessary to move on to negotiations with Saudi Arabia in order to settle the flared up conflict once and for all.

This speech provoked riots in the country. In particular, in the capital of Yemen, Sana'a, fighting began between the guards of the ex-president and the Houthis, in which even tanks were involved. At least 245 people were killed in these clashes.

Opponents of the Houthis welcomed the split in the camp of rivals, on the side of which Saleh had previously supported. President Hadi decided to order military units loyal to him to launch attacks on the capital.

Quite quickly pro-government troops managed to establish control over most of the territory of Sana'a. On December 4, the rebels nevertheless broke through to the residence of the former president, but they did not find him. Saleh tried to escape from the capital, but his car was blown up on the outskirts of the city. The politician himself was killed with a control shot.

This act of the Houthis clearly demonstrated how ruthlessly they are readyact with their former supporters who decide to change their position.

Humanitarian disaster

Yemen Photos

Telling briefly about the conflict in Yemen, it is necessary to pay attention to the humanitarian situation in the region. In 2017, the leadership of the United Nations called for attention to the problem in this country. According to their estimates, at that time 2 million people needed immediate assistance. The question of their life and death was acute. Some 500,000 children suffered from malnutrition.

Food supplies have been intermittent due to a naval blockade put in place by the Arab coalition to prevent the supply of arms to the rebels.

At the same time, the unprotected segments of the population lost help from the government, more than one million civil servants did not receive a salary.

International organizations, after analyzing the situation with the mortality of children from malnutrition, came to the conclusion that during the conflict about 85 thousand minors died of starvation.

At the end of 2017, Houthi leader Abdel Malek al-Houthi began to threaten Saudi Arabia with a serious blow if it did not lift the blockade on Yemen. The coalition made concessions, starting to let humanitarian aid into the country.

According to UN estimates, about 6.5 thousand civilians have died in Yemen since 2015. Most fell victim to attacks by the Arab coalition.


In December 2018, a truce was signed between the warring parties. Negotiationtook place in Sweden, they were held under the auspices of the UN.

In particular, we managed to discuss issues related to the release of prisoners and prisoners, the problem with the Central Bank of Yemen, the blockade of Taiz, the situation around Sana'a airport, the supply of humanitarian aid to the republic.

December 18, the ceasefire officially came into force.

Resumption of hostilities

History of Yemen

To the dismay of the world community, peace did not last long. The fighting resumed on January 5, 2019. They coincided with the visit of UN Special Envoy Martin Griffiths to the country.

Rebel detachments and government forces accused each other of violating the ceasefire in the port of Hodeidah. Eyewitnesses reported a large-scale fire that broke out in the area of ​​warehouses where humanitarian aid was stored.

A few days later, a Houthi drone attacked a government military base during a military parade. At least 6 dignitaries were injured, 6 dead and several dozen injured were also reported. The military conflict flared up with renewed vigor.


There are large-scale oil deposits on the territory of the country, so military operations immediately began to affect prices for "black gold". Assessing the conflict in Yemen and its consequences, experts note that one of the main conclusions that can be drawn as a result of what happened is that the United States and leading Western European countries can no longer cope withthe role of arbiter in the Middle East. The countries they provide assistance to are still plunged into chaos.

The result of this is the coming to power of Islamists who are not ready to negotiate. Trying to remedy this situation, the Americans sent their troops to Yemen.

As a result, the conflict in Yemen had a significant impact on world politics, even though it seemed at first local. The situation on the territory of this state demonstrated the real alignment of forces in the Middle East. First of all, the desire of the Americans to distance themselves from the role of the world policeman. This desire became especially evident after the defeat of the Bush Jr. team in Iraq.

It is believed that in the long term, the Americans will reorient themselves to the Asia-Pacific region, starting a multifaceted cooperation with China. The countries of the Middle East will have to independently determine the vectors of their development in the near future.

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