Thursday, April 28, 2011

'Saudis fear losing seized Yemeni land'

Wed Apr 27, 2011 11:31AM
Saudi soldiers in the former Yemeni province of Jizan, during the war with Yemen's Houthi fighters in Jan. 2010.
A Yemeni opposition group says the [Persian] Gulf Cooperation Council ([P]GCC) is plotting to defeat the popular revolt in the country against the despotic rule of President Ali Abdullah Saleh.

Secretary General of Yemen Democratic Party Saif al-Washli told the al-Alam news network on Tuesday that leaders of [P]GCC are against Yemen's membership in the council.

This is because they fear that if Yemen joins the council, it may demand the return of three of its provinces under the occupation of Saudi Arabia, al-Washli explained.

When the British partitioned the Arabian Peninsula following the breakup of the Ottoman Empire, the Saudis sought to expand their territories by occupying parts of Yemen.

This unleashed the 1934 Saudi-Yemen war that resulted in the separation of three provinces -- Asir, Jazan and Najran -- from Greater Yemen.

Nearly 80 years after the Saudi occupation, the border dispute remains fresh, with many Yemenis demanding the return of the three regions to the motherland.

In November 2009, Saudi forces once again intervened in Yemen by launching an offensive against Shia fighters in the north, known as Houthis.

The massive offensive claimed the lives of a large number of people, including women and children, and led to the displacement of hundreds of thousands in the impoverished country.

Al-Washli stressed that Saudi Arabia's recent interventions in Bahrain, Egypt, Syria and Iraq also show that the Kingdom is bent on suppressing popular revolutions in the Mideast by following pro-Israeli agendas.

The latest comments come two days after the [P]GCC granted President Ali Abdullah Saleh immunity from prosecution in exchange for his stepping down and handing power over to his Vice President Abdu Rabu Mansour Hadi.

According to the plan, the opposition will be allowed to form an interim national unity government after the president signs the deal.

Reports say both Saleh and Yemen's opposition have accepted the plan.

However, the opposition groups believe Saleh's verbal acceptance of the plan is merely another ploy.

Since late January, hundreds of thousands of people have turned out for regular demonstrations in Yemen's biggest cities, calling for an end to corruption and unemployment and demanding Saleh's ouster after nearly 33 years in power.

According to local sources, at least 300 protesters have been killed and many others have been injured during clashes with riot police and forces loyal to the Yemeni president armed with batons, knives, and clubs.

Share this article:
Send to friendPrint this article
Related Stories:

No comments:

Post a Comment