Yemen and its Political Future

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Hassan Hanizadeh
Middle East Analyst

Establishment of the Supreme Political Council in Yemen and the wide welcome given to establishment of this council by the country’s people have been among the latest political developments in the Arab country.

After about two years, the Yemeni parliament convened and passed the decision for the establishment of a political council to run the country’s affairs through a majority vote.

The council was actually established in the void created after the resignation of the country’s former president and government, and is expected to provide grounds for the presidential election and formation of a national unity cabinet in a matter of four months.

The main reason behind the establishment of this council was the failure of negotiations among various political sides in Kuwait with analysts believing that the failure of Yemen peace talks was a result of interference by Saudi Arabia in the course of Kuwait talks.

These negotiations continued for more than three months under supervision of the United Nations Special Envoy to Yemen, Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed, in the Kuwait City, but Saudi Arabia was trying to keep Yemen’s Ansarullah movement away from the power structure in the Arab country. Ansarullah demanded establishment of a national unity government and holding of free presidential election to be attended by all political groups in Yemen, but Saudi Arabia insisted that Ansarullah should not be present in the country’s future cabinet. Differences, which broke out during negotiations in Kuwait, finally caused the failure of peace talks among various political groups in Yemen. Finally, and in view of prior resignation of the country’s former president, Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, the Yemeni parliament took action according to the constitution. Based on Article 5 of the Yemeni constitution, if a president fails to fulfill his duties for three months, the parliament can form a council to run the country’s affairs.

The council is duty-bound to provide grounds for holding of the presidential election within three months, but in case of any security problem, the council can run the country’s affairs for a full period of six months. Naturally, since Saudi Arabia wants insecurity to continue in Yemen, it has increased the frequency of its air raids against the people in Yemen in order to impede the activities of the country’s Supreme Political Council. The recent million-strong demonstration by Yemeni people in the country’s capital, Sana’a, proved that the Supreme Political Council enjoys widespread popular support and it is on the basis of this support that it can provide necessary grounds to hold the presidential election. As a first step, Yemen’s Supreme Political Council, which has replaced the government, must also formulate necessary military mechanisms to prevent continuation of Saudi Arabia’s air raids against the people of Yemen.

On the other hand, reduced number of American forces taking part in operations conducted by the Saudi-led coalition against the people in Yemen shows that the United States does not intend to take a negative position in the face of Yemen’s Supreme Political Council. Therefore, following Saudi Arabia’s military fiasco in Yemen, the Saudi regime is now faced with a new political failure in Yemen through the establishment of the Supreme Political Council. Subsequently, it seems that conditions in Yemen are moving in the direction of finding a domestic political solution, and in the near future, this country would witness establishment of a national unity government through the participation of all political groups in Yemen.

Key WordsYemen, Political Future, Supreme Political Council, Yemeni Parliament, Presidential Election, National Unity Cabinet, Peace Talks, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait Talks, Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed, Ansarullah, Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, American Forces, Hanizadeh  

Source: Farhikhtegan Newspaper
Translated By: Iran Review.Org

*Photo Credit: Shiite News