Written by  //  January 18, 2010  //  Middle East & Arab World, Terrorism, U.S.  //  Comments Off on Yemen

CIA World Fact Book
U.S. Department of State Background Note
BBC Country profile
The reputed home of the Queen of Sheba, Yemen has been at the crossroads of Africa, the Middle East and Asia for thousands of years thanks to its position on the ancient spice routes.
Times Topics: Yemen

Yemen seeks Canadian support against al-Qaeda
Yemen’s foreign minister was in Ottawa on Monday seeking support from the government of Canada as the Middle Eastern country struggles with al-Qaeda elements within its borders. The Yemeni minister, Abubakar al-Qirbi, is making the rounds ahead of a major conference on Yemen in London next week, when Yemen is expected to ask for development aid.
12 January
Saudi and Yemeni Forces Fight Rebels on 2 Fronts
The developments signaled a concerted push by the Saudi and Yemeni governments to try to end an ongoing conflict that has flared into all-out war since the summer. The conflict between Yemen and the Houthi rebels, named after the clan of their leader, also spilled over the border into Saudi Arabia, prompting Saudi forces to begin their own offensive on Nov. 4 to push the rebels back.
US won’t send troops to Yemen. How will it defeat Al Qaeda there?
(CSM) President Obama and the Pentagon have ruled out US troops in Yemen. The US will have to rely on civilian aid – which has been ineffective in Iraq and Afghanistan – to undermine Al Qaeda.
11 January
Jihadis Flock To Yemen
Al-Qaeda’s Afghan rebels moving in, governor says
(National Post) Dozens of Saudi and Egyptian veterans of al-Qaeda’s operations in Afghanistan have been pouring into Yemen, a senior official warned yesterday.
In the gloomiest internal assessment of Yemen’s security yet, a regional governor said jihadis from across the Arab world were hiding in the lawless hills where the accused Christmas “underwear bomber” is thought to have trained.
5 January
Yemen hemming in al Qaeda, U.S. embassy reopens
(Reuters) Thousands of Yemeni troops are hemming in al Qaeda militants in three provinces, security sources said on Tuesday, and the U.S. embassy in Sanaa reopened after security forces staged a raid just outside the capital.
29 December
Western counter-terrorism help ‘not enough for Yemen’
In recent weeks, Yemen has launched several major operations against al-Qaeda with US backing, amid fears the troubled country is becoming a major training centre for militants.
17 September 2009
Cold War roots of Yemen conflict
The roots of Yemen’s current civil conflict, in which the government is trying to put down a localised but potent rebellion, lie in the Cold War regional politics of the 1960s. Then, Egyptian-backed army officers brought an end to Yemen’s 1,000-year Shia Imamate and established the modern Yemeni republic.
20 November 2008
Yemen ‘faces crisis as oil ends’
The World Bank predicts that Yemen’s oil and gas revenues will plummet over the next two years and fall to zero by 2017 as supplies run out.
Given that they provide around 90% of the country’s exports, this could be catastrophic. An unnamed energy expert is quoted in the report as saying that this points to economic collapse within four of five years time.
Although Yemen was the first democratic nation on the Arabian peninsula, its democracy is described as fragile and distorted by what the report calls the northern tribal system of patronage around President Ali Abdullah Saleh. The president is already facing Islamist insurgents as well as conflicts with tribal groups, and must stand down in 2013 after 35 years in power.
November 2008
(Chatham House Briefing Paper) Yemen: Fear of Failure
– The underlying drivers for future instability are economic. The state budget is heavily dependent on revenue from dwindling oil supplies. Yemen’s window of opportunity to shape its own future and create a post-oil economy is narrowing.
– Western governments need to work towards an effective regional approach with the member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council, in particular Saudi Arabia.
– Future instability in Yemen could expand a lawless zone stretching from northern Kenya, through Somalia and the Gulf of Aden, to Saudi Arabia. Piracy, organized crime and violent jihad would escalate, with implications for the security of shipping routes, the transit of oil through the Suez Canal and the internal security of Yemen’s neighbours. Download Paper here
17 September 2008
Yemen faces new Jihad generation
(BBC) There is a complex network of over-lapping splinter cells and claims of rival leadership within Yemen.
Extremist violence in Yemen has been on the rise since February 2006, when 23 prominent militants tunnelled their way out of a high-security jail.

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