Qatari news channel Al-Jazeera has published a 162-page confidential document mapping the Yemeni conflict, based on the current de facto division of Yemen amongst warring parties.
Some of these documents show Riyadh’s support of the separatist movement known as the Southern Transitional Council (STC), and reveal that Saudi Arabia has been pushing Yemen to this current situation ever since 2011.
“Saudi Arabia has considered the secession of southern Yemen as one of the options for resolving what it calls the ‘southern issue’, and has sought to make southern Yemen protest and fight [against Yemen] to serve its interests,” the report said.
Documents also revealed the role of Saudi Arabia in supporting the southern forces under the pretext of fighting what Riyadh calls ‘Iranian influence’ in southern Yemen.
All of these actions are interestingly enough very much contrary to Riyadh’s official claims of backing the ousted Hadi government and supporting the territorial integrity of a unified Yemen.
Al-Jazeera claimed that Riyadh was aware of the rising popularity and successes of Ansarullah already two years before the movement led the successful September 21 Revolution of 2014. The reports states that Saudi Arabia deliberately decided not to aid Hadi in suppressing Ansarullah at that time, in order to be able to use the fight against the successful revolutionaries as a pretext for a full-on invasion in 2015.
According to the report, Riyadh ignored requests for assistance from the Yemeni government headed by fugitive Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi, but paid large amounts of money to several tribal sheikhs in order to make them serve Saudi interests.
The Al-Jazeera report is of significant importance, as it directly contradicts the official Saudi narrative that claims Riyadh only got involved in 2015 out of support for what it calls the “legitimate government” of Hadi.
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