TRANSLATED: Al-Akhbar report on growing rifts between UAE and Saudi Arabia in Yemen
Translated today in our Daily Briefing (for a free trial, email firstname.lastname@example.org):
On November 10, the Al-Akhbar daily newspaper carried the following report by Ali Jahez: “…The pull out of the “first batch” of Emirati forces from Yemen brought the Emirati-Saudi conflict in the southern areas back to the limelight. Since the four Aden attacks that targeted the Emirati presence and its affiliated parties at the Al-Qasr hotel some weeks ago, the differences had re-emerged. However, the growing complaints made by the Reform Party (the MB branch in Yemen) against the UAE’s position and performance in Yemen intensified the conflict between the two parties and raised questions concerning the operations targeting the UAE’s presence in Aden and other Yemeni regions.
“Local sources had indicated at an earlier time that the operations targeting the UAE forces in Aden as well as the headquarters of the Khaled Bahah cabinet were carried out by militias affiliated to ISIL, allied with the Reform Party, and supported by Saudi Arabia with the aim of forcing Bahah and his team to leave Aden and pulling the rug of the military control from under the UAE forces’ feet. Thus, the presence of the UAE will become weak along with the Sudanese forces that do not play a real role in the equation that Saudi Arabia wants there.
“In the past few days, the Reform Party’s media launched a campaign against the UAE and the parties supporting it mainly Bahah and figures affiliated to him. Differences erupted between the fleeing President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi, who is affiliated to Saudi Arabia, and Bahah, who is affiliated to the UAE to the extent that the former issued a decision to sack the latter (the decision was not officially voiced out). Meanwhile, the Reform Party’s media welcomed the decision. The newspapers described Bahah as “an agent who is secretly communicating with Ansarullah.” According to well-informed sources, the decision led to a severe clash between Bahah and Hadi, one that embodies the Saudi-Emirati conflict.
“This conflict revolves around the role of the Muslim Brothers and their power in the South and along the “resistance” fronts (the armed groups supporting the Alliance) in Ma’reb and Taez, in addition to the MB’s military presence in the South and their alliance with Hadi and his militias as well as the radical groups supported by Saudi Arabia in the face of some “Southern movement” factions and Khaled Bahah and his supporters who enjoy an Emirati support.
“The UAE pulled out its forces from Yemen late last week following the losses it suffered on several fronts, the last of which was in Ma’reb. The UAE dispatched new forces dubbed “the second batch;” but Al-Akhbar learned that these forces amount to half the number of the earlier batch and the same goes for their armament. Well-informed sources indicated that the new batch is actually formed by forces hired by the UAE from the Black Water company in order to bring foreign forces to Aden…”