MAST SECURITY UPDATE: YEMEN
Date: 02 September 2015
Local sources have reported that Yemen may become two separate states, and that this will be a popular solution with the Yemenis around Aden.
Gerry Northwood OBE, COO of MAST, said: "Interestingly, should the separation occur along the pre-1990 North Yemen/South Yemen borders, both states will share jurisdiction of the Bab-el-Mandeb strait, which may create a greater challenge for those seeking to ensure that the straits are properly regulated and policed."
Commenting on Hodeidah being declared open again, Northwood said: "The situation remains extremely unstable and we believe closures may still occur at short notice. It appears that prior to air strikes against the port, warnings were promulgated to vessels alongside so that they could move from their berths and to a safe distance. We understand fuel is currently in very short supply and that this may lead to a demand for vessels to discharge fuel to the port."
UAE Military Forces are currently reporting that they are in control of the city. It should, however, be noted that Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsular and the Islamic State have increased their influence through key areas of southern Yemen, notably in the area around Al Mukalha and in Aden itself.
The port remains open and traffic levels are slowly increasing. Two assassination attempts on prominent people were reported in Aden on August 31st. This has resulted in a ban on the use of all pillion vehicles within the area.
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