Analysis

Latest Analysis

  • Don’t Import the Libyan Model to Yemen

    In early February, the UN announced that 74 influential Libyan politicians and factional and tribal representatives gathered in Geneva had successfully negotiated the formation of an interim national government, which aims to hold national elections later this year. That fledgling success, coupled with the dire state of the war in Yemen – currently characterized by… Read more...
  • Myth of Batarfi’s Arrest Plays into Weakened AQAP Narrative

    It’s the sort of embarrassing spectacle we’ve seen time and time again over the past 20 years. A terrorist leader is announced killed or captured, only to reappear days or weeks later, very much alive and free. This time it was the UN’s Al-Qaeda Monitoring Team that made the mistake. In a report dated February… Read more...
  • The Panel of Experts Err on Yemen

    On January 22, 2021, the Panel of Experts (PoE) on Yemen issued its annual report to the United Nations Security Council. This year’s report summarizes the PoE’s views on the peace process as well as on the security, stability and economic situation in the country during 2020. The report leveled accusations of corruption, money laundering… Read more...
  • Washington’s Lack of Options in Marib

    Just days after the Biden administration reversed the Trump-era designation of the Houthi movement as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO), the armed group renewed its military campaign to take over the strategic city of Marib. As the Yemeni national army backed by resistance fighters and local tribes fights to fend off the offensive, Saudi Arabia… Read more...
  • ‘Businessmen are not prohibited from engaging in politics’ – A Q&A with Ahmad al-Essi

    Officially, Ahmad al-Essi is a businessman who dabbles in politics – he’s the chairman of the Alessi Group as well as the deputy head of Yemen’s presidential office. Unofficially, Al-Essi may be the most powerful Yemeni alive. Certainly, he’s one of the richest. Twice, once in 2015 and again in 2016, he provided a financial… Read more...
  • China Prioritizes Gulf Economic, Oil Relationships; Yemen Can Wait

    Introduction Diplomatically isolated by the West and overshadowed by the Soviet Union in the east, communist China of the 1950s sought out relationships with smaller states, including Yemen. It cultivated diplomatic and economic ties, which it maintained with various Yemeni leaders, northern and southern, through the next three decades. China secured infrastructure projects, provided loans,… Read more...
  • Yemen’s Socialist Party and the Fragmentation of the Yemeni Left

    Yemeni political parties have performed dismally in recent decades. This has both spurred, and been spurred on by, the failure of politics in general in the country, which culminated in the outbreak of war almost six years ago. Yemen’s political parties today have abandoned their positions as national power brokers capable of pushing forward a… Read more...
  • In Focus: How I Narrowly Escaped Death at Aden Airport

    Only a limited number of journalists and government officials were supposed to be present at Aden International Airport on December 30, 2020. However, to our surprise, hundreds of citizens had flocked since the early hours of the morning to welcome the new cabinet members, and some to celebrate the return of former Aden security director… Read more...
  • Three Weeks in a Houthi Prison

    On May 15, 2015, I sat between two Yemeni officers in a police truck behind the Criminal Investigation Department in Sana’a. “You’ll be free in two hours,” one of the officers told me as he stared anxiously at the building, which housed a prison run by the US-backed Counter-Terror Unit (CTU). Read more...
  • Journey into Shabwa

    In November, the Sana’a Center organized a visit by an international press delegation to Yemen’s Shabwa governorate. This was the third such trip the center has arranged, with previous ones being to Marib and Hadramawt, and came as part of the Sana’a Center’s continuing commitment to ensure the world, through its media, has a window… Read more...
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