Mansour Hadi grabbed the power in Yemen from his predecessor through an election he was solely running in. His fragile administration ended in a plea for Saudi Coalition to intervene.
The impaired democratic process endowed the Houthi movement with more popularity and an ensuing more power. With the forces affiliated with the group taking more power and land, the Saudi Arabia started a bloody intervention. Saudi coalition, partly to contain the contagious nature of the events into Saudi Arabia, brought about death, famine, and starvation.
The third part of this series focuses on the Saudi coalition intervention in Yemen. En route, we understand that the impacts of civil war on Yemen was trivial compared to what Riyadh did.
Hadi administration and Houthi Movement
National Dialogue Conference started in 2013 aiming at deescalating the tensions. Some southern separatist factions ignored the negotiations. It took about eight months for the negotiations to come to a close with the preparation of a text that would serve as a roadmap for the writing of constitution. However, fighting and insecurity persisted, casting suspicion on further development.
After enacting major cuts in gasoline subsidies in July, 2014, Hadi government was tapped with a new surge of popular outrage. The Houthi movement organized the protesters, who alleged that the administration with corruption.
Hadi’s security services started firing on protesters in Sanaa two months after the new wave kicked off. They assassinated a number of people, igniting new series of clashes.
Militant Houthi fighters overtook Sanaa in September, taking critical government institutions. Hadi’s cabinet faced dissolution. Mansour Hadi and the Houthi movement reached a deal through steps by united nations. Houthi fighters, on the other hand, refused to leave Sanaa until Hadi appointed a prime minister they approve of.
Battle between government troops and the Houthi forces controlling Sanaa escalated in January of the next year. The Houthi troops took over the government building late in the same month, seemingly making the prospect of a total seizure more probable.
Two days later, Mansour Hadi and his PM resigned from office in a letter to the parliament. This protesting move resulted in a power struggle in Yemen. Hadi was taken into custody and placed under home arrest.
A few days later, Houthi movement formally took control of the country. To construct a transitional administration, they suspended parliament. Hadi fled the arrest and reappeared in Aden late in February heading his way to Saudi Arabia in weeks. He had called for Saudi coalition intervention.
Saudi Coalition Intervention
Late in March, the intervention by Saudi coalition kicked off in Yemen. A coalition of Arab states started air attacks, apparently to prevent a Houthi push on Aden. Ex-president Saleh, still an influential figure in Yemeni politics, voiced support for, and strengthened, the Houthi movement.
Pro-Hadi troops were able to restore dominance in Aden thanks to a Saudi Coalition air strikes in four months. Coalition soldiers reinforced these fighters a month later, helping to push the Houthis out of much of the South. Hadi entered Aden temporarily in September, although he spent the major proportion of time in Saudi Arabia.
The Saudi coalition’s objective to drive the Houthi forces out of the North, and the capital, proved significantly more challenging. Saudi Strikes murdered tens of thousands of innocent civilians, including children and destroyed Yemen’s critical facilities. They were unable, however, to break the Houthis’ hold on the vital Sanaa.
Saudi coalition kept up with its operation in Yemen despite failure to meet the primary goals. Receiving political, financial, and military support from then-US president Donald Trump, Saudi crown prince made no hesitation in coloring the nation red.
In the next part, we will continue with the development and impacts of Saudi coalition intervention in Yemen.