Jemenkrieg-Mosaik 726b- Yemen War Mosaic 726b

Yemen Press Reader 726b: 13. März 2021: Fortsetzung von Jemenkrieg-Mosaik 726, cp6 - cp19 / March 13, 2021: Sequel to Yemen War Mosaic 726, cp6 - cp19
Bei diesem Beitrag handelt es sich um ein Blog aus der Freitag-Community

Eingebetteter Medieninhalt

Dies ist die Fortsetzung von Jemenkrieg-Mosaik 726, Teil 1 / This is the sequel of Yemen War Mosaic 726, part 1:

Schwerpunkte / Key aspects

Kursiv: Siehe Teil 1 / In Italics: Look in part 1

Klassifizierung / Classification

Für wen das Thema ganz neu ist / Who is new to the subject

cp1 Am wichtigsten / Most important

cp1a Am wichtigsten: Coronavirus und Seuchen / Most important: Coronavirus and epidemics

cp2 Allgemein / General

cp2a Allgemein: Saudische Blockade / General: Saudi blockade

cp3 Humanitäre Lage / Humanitarian situation

cp4 Flüchtlinge / Refugees

cp5 Nordjemen und Huthis / Northern Yemen and Houthis

cp6 Separatisten und Hadi-Regierung im Südjemen / Separatists and Hadi government in Southern Yemen

cp7 UNO und Friedensgespräche / UN and peace talks

cp8 Saudi-Arabien / Saudi Arabia

cp8a Jamal Khashoggi

cp9 USA

cp9a USA-Iran Krise: Spannungen am Golf / US-Iran crisis: Tensions at the Gulf

cp10 Großbritannien / Great Britain

cp12 Andere Länder / Other countries

cp12b Sudan

cp13 Waffenhandel / Arms trade

cp14 Terrorismus / Terrorism

cp15 Propaganda

cp16 Saudische Luftangriffe / Saudi air raids

cp17 Kriegsereignisse / Theater of War

cp17a Kriegsereignisse: Schlacht um Marib / Theater of War: Marib battle

cp18 Kampf um Hodeidah / Hodeidah battle

cp19 Sonstiges / Other

Klassifizierung / Classification




(Kein Stern / No star)

? = Keine Einschatzung / No rating

A = Aktuell / Current news

B = Hintergrund / Background

C = Chronik / Chronicle

D = Details

E = Wirtschaft / Economy

H = Humanitäre Fragen / Humanitarian questions

K = Krieg / War

P = Politik / Politics

pH = Pro-Houthi

pS = Pro-Saudi

T = Terrorismus / Terrorism

cp6 Südjemen und Hadi-Regierung / Southern Yemen and Hadi-government

Siehe / Look at cp1

(A T)

Explosion in Saudi-held city of Taiz injures eight

According to the local sources, an improvised explosive device (IED) went off in Najd Qasim market used for selling vegetables in Al-Masrakh district, injuring eight people, including a child.

(A T)

Unidentified gunmen assassinate [separatist] BS soldier south Yemen

and also

(A P)

Saudi Arabia Involved in Plundering Donor Funds in Yemen

A Yemeni activist revealed on social media, Thursday, a major scandal revealing Saudi Arabia's involvement in plundering donor funds through the so-called "King Salman Center for International Aid Management for Yemen" supervised by the Saudi ambassador, Mohammad Al Jaber.

Abdulqadir Al-Kharraz published documents revealing that the Saudi Center had purchased 50 electricity poles for Marib governorate, at a value of one million and 79 thousand dollars. This amount indicates that the Saudi program supervised by Ambassador Al Jaber, the de facto ruler of the regions under aggression control, southern and eastern Yemen, has multiplied the price per column by 10 times according to the comparison between the supply to Marib and Hajjah in the same table.

The same amount of electric poles has already been purchased for Hajjah governorate, at $ 117,000, and this is evident from the table of payments.

(A P)

Disputes erupt between Yemeni fishermen and UAE occupation in Socotra

Disputes erupted on Thursday between Yemeni fishermen and representative of the UAE occupation forces, Khalfan Al-Mazrouei, on the occupied Socotra island.

Local sources on the island confirmed that Al-Mazrouei has been refusing to pay fishermen their dues for the value of fish since the beginning of the establishment of a UAE factory for fish canning on the island.

According to the sources, the UAE is forcing Yemeni fishermen to hand over fish to the Prime factory, which in turn carries out packaging and exports to Abu Dhabi.

(A P)

Human Rights Report: Forces of US-Saudi Aggression Imprisoned 13 Women in Lahij

Human rights sources revealed serious violations of women's rights in Lahij governorate, which is under the control of the Saudi-led aggression militia.

The Human Rights Office in the governorate monitored 115 cases of violation during 2020, including 40 cases of violence and physical assault against women, 17 marriages for minors and 3 cases of forced marriage.

The human rights activist Hayat Al-Rahibi confirmed that the militias kidnapped 32 citizens, 7 cases of kidnapping of minors and 5 cases of enforced disappearance.

Al-Rahibi indicated that women were subjected to the most horrific violations of their rights, as 13 women were imprisoned by the militia and deprived of their legal rights guaranteed to them.

(A P)

Al-Jaadi reveals massive conspiracies against Riyadh deal

The conspiracies machinated by the enemies of the South are meant to harm the southern will and identity, in addition to circumvent the Riyadh Agreement, the member of the presidency of the Southern Transitional Council (STC), Fadl al-Jaadi said in a tweet on Thursday.
Al-Jaadi made it clear that "The war on services and the current stalemate in the implementation process of the Riyadh Agreement is part of a massive plot that seeks to circumvent the Saudi-sponsored deal and to impose a new reality aiming to subjugate the South and pass on corruption and terrorism."
He concluded his tweet by affirming that the STC leadership will not give up the right of the southern people and will never accept the policies intended to humiliate them.

(A P)

Yemeni gov't urges Saudi support by cash deposit

The Yemeni UN-recognized government on Wednesday urged Saudi Arabia and other Arab coalition countries to provide it with urgent support in the form of a cash deposit to save the Yemeni rial and meet its commitments.
This call came at a cabinet meeting in Aden after the national currency declined to 900 for one dollar in government-held areas, where high prices and lack of services pushed people to protest.

(A P)

Aden electricity system out of service

An official source at the Aden Electricity Corporation said, "The electricity system has generally departed from all regions and directorates of the capital due to a technical defect in Al-Haswa station.

(A H P)

Film: Saudi forces detained Yemeni fishermen in Aden to forced them to dump their fish back to sea. Yemeni are being starved.

(A P)

PM: urgent measures underway to address deteriorating services, economy

Yemen's Prime Minister Maeen Abdulmalik on Wednesday said the government has taken urgent decisions and measures to address deteriorating service and economic issues.

The government will not accept or allow the deterioration of services in the interim capital Aden and the southern provinces of Lahj and Abyan, especially long power outages caused by fuel shortages and oil-related problems, he said in a news conference.


cp7 UNO und Friedensgespräche / UN and peace talks

Siehe / Look at cp2 (US ceasefire proposal), cp3 (WFP, Beasley)

cp8 Saudi-Arabien / Saudi Arabia

(A P)

This one is on a large level cyber-bullying/harassment. A few days ago a trend targeting the Alhathloul family was trending in Saudi. Tweets like that below, which targeted

@LoujainHathloul's siblings things like 'traitors' were very much part of the campaign

Imagine thousands of people attacking your family on Twitter. Looks like this

Anyway this trend produced thousands of tweets. I looked at a sample of around 13000 interactions.

My remark: The tweet by @jeddah70 now has been removed.

(A P)

Saudi King Salman sacks haj minister in royal decrees

(A P)

Saudi Arabia Public Investment Fund Joins The Race For A Stake In FC Inter

Takeover talks are intensifying in Milan, as Serie A giant FC Inter are set to decide their new ownership, financial assets, and future.

According to Italian sports daily Corriere dello Sport, the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia (PIF) has made an offer to purchase a 30% stake at FC Inter.

The Saudi fund, which is one of the world’s largest sovereign funds with assets worth $347 billion, has already made an offer in the region of $355 million, the report continues.

Negotiations with FC Inter majority owner - Chinese e-commerce giant Suning Holding Group - are being led by PIF governor and manager Yasir Al-Rumayyan.

Only last year the Saudi group, which manages around 200 assets including Boeing BA +3.6%, Facebook, and Disney, was similarly linked to a takeover bid for Premier League PINC +0.6% club Newcastle United, but the negotiations eventually fell through, the New York Times NYT 0.0% reported.


(A P)

A multi-million dollar deal that Bin Salman seeks to wash away his reputation … Inter Milan officials have revealed the details

According to an informed source, he said that the Saudis had advanced from Inter Milan a week ago.

“You can’t buy two clubs at the same time, and it looks like they have given up on Newcastle.”

“They have a lot of strength to take over the debts of Inter Milan,” the source added.

Inter Milan leads the Italian league and is part of the new European Champions League.

Earlier, the international human rights organization, Human Rights Watch, revealed attempts by Bin Salman. In order to use sport to whitewash his human rights record, and to cover up his crimes against human rights.

The organization considered bin Salman’s taking on the sport as a distraction.

And to divert attention from the record of human rights violations in the Kingdom, through foreign investments in this field.

The organization stated that Bin Salman has an acceleration in interest in sports affairs and its activities.

It is an attempt through which it seeks to divert attention from the human rights practices and violations occurring in the Kingdom.

The organization said, according to the director of global initiatives in the organization, “Minky Worden, that bin Salman has close attempts to use sports. And buying clubs and holding major matches to cover up the kingdom’s deteriorating human rights behavior.

and also

(A P)

Saudi court denies activist’s appeal, upholds her travel ban

A court in Saudi Arabia on Wednesday denied the appeal by one of the kingdom’s most prominent political activists that would have allowed her to travel freely, her supporters said, weeks after her release from prison.

Loujain al-Hathloul, whose 1001-day detention drew fierce international criticism of the kingdom’s human rights record, had hoped to lift a five-year ban on traveling outside Saudi Arabia that the court imposed as a condition of her release. She also faces three years of probation, meaning that she cannot return to activism or speak her mind without risking re-arrest, her family said.

and also



(A P)

Loujain received the official appeal sentence, in which the names of the judges are not mentioned. The judge considered it « not necessary », thus violating saudi laws. It is one of many exemples where judges refuse to apply the written laws.

and also

referring to (doocument)

(A P)

[Thread on sockpuppet] 1/10 Spot the difference between the man the left and right...

Meanwhile, the guy on the right is Dr. Jhon Whiliams. @JhonWhiliams

Beside the trailblazing spelling of Jhon Whiliams, which is unique, Jhon is a "Independent investigator, Journalist, Doctor on-call".

Despite this, Jhon really hates Iran and mullahs...and Shia muslims who he describes as 'humanoanimals' (charming for a doctor).

hates Qatar, Turkey and Oman (devil in veil), and has made a handy list of the 'WORST' countries and 'BEST' countries in the Middle East. Saudi is the best of course, Iran is 'Hitler'. Qatar is a snake emoji.

(A P)

33 people have been beheaded in #AlQatif Municipality in #Saudi_arabia , by the #Saudi regime with no traces of their bodies, or anyone to barry! It's already bad enough they got killed at least give them their dignity

cp8a Jamal Khashoggi

(A P)

Khashoggi documentary and Palestinian film nominated for BAFTAs

cp9 USA

Siehe / Look at cp2, cp9a

(* A P)

State Department Press Briefing – March 12, 2021

Ned Price, Spokesperson

The United States supports the free flow of fuel, food, and other essential goods into Yemen. However, doing so requires not only that goods pass smoothly through ports, but also that they are allowed to pass through the country freely, including through areas under Houthi control. Unfortunately, we know that the Houthis continue to impede that flow, including diverting money from imports that were intended for civil service salaries in direct violation of their obligations under a UN-brokered agreement. As a result, civil servants are not getting paid and therefore lack funds to purchase what food is available. Houthi diversion of fuel imports is just one of the many ways they are exacerbating the humanitarian crisis for the majority of the Yemeni population under their control.

We have heard the UN and international donors decry the ways the Houthis are obstructing and diverting humanitarian assistance. And UN experts describe the ways they divert state revenues to fund their war efforts and place a stranglehold on economic activity. Contrary to some recent reporting, food is being consistently discharged at Hudaydah port according to data provided by the UN Verification and Inspection Mechanism. Unfortunately, we can’t assure that food that passes through the port reaches those in need. That area is under Houthi control and the Houthis often divert and manipulate this aid, as I’ve mentioned.

The United States will work with the governments of Yemen and Saudi Arabia to find a way to ensure fuel makes its ways – makes it – makes it to the Yemenis who need it most and that it is not confiscated by the Houthis for sale on the black market or for use in their war effort. Only through a durable peace agreement can we hope to reverse the dire humanitarian crisis in Yemen. Supporting such an agreement is precisely what U.S. Special Envoy Lenderking is seeking to do and why he has spent the last 17 days in the region.

And so it was very clear to us that if we were going to address not only the humanitarian plight and the humanitarian suffering of the Yemeni people, but if we were also to push forward with the political settlement that we know must be at the heart of our efforts to de-escalate, to bring security and stability not only to the people of Yemen but also to our partners in Saudi Arabia and throughout the region, we needed to address the humanitarian suffering, the humanitarian plight of the Yemeni people. We will not make any apologies for the fact that humanitarian concerns are primary in our policy. It’s precisely why Secretary Blinken attended the Yemen donors conference where he announced more than $190 million in U.S. support. It’s precisely why we have announced the resumption of the provision of some aid to parts of northern Yemen.

We will continue to look for ways to support the Yemeni people as we continue to support what UN Special Envoy Martin Griffiths has been engaged in for some time now, and that in more recent weeks what Special Envoy Lenderking has been supporting, and that is bringing about a ceasefire and a political settlement to this long-running conflict in Yemen.

(B P)

Biden must do more to bring peace to Yemen

There has never been congressional approval of our military role against the Houthis

Sadly, we, the U.S., bear a great responsibility for the Yemen catastrophe. This disaster is human-made, and the U.S. has been complicit from day one.

The U.S. must do no more harm in Yemen. Veterans For Peace urges that all pending arms sales to Saudi Arabia and the UAE be canceled, not just frozen or paused. We also urge that all U.S. troops and military contractors be withdrawn from Saudi Arabia. The U.S. must work with the U.N. and other nations to increase humanitarian aid and work with all parties to secure a cease fire and peace negotiations.

Lastly, this welcome change in policy by the Biden administration should be looked upon as low hanging fruit — this unproductive, senseless use of U.S. power in the past six years has not increased our national security one iota. The reversal of U.S. policy in Yemen can be the opportunity for a true reset of our policy toward the Middle East, especially Saudi Arabia and Iran. We must encourage the Biden Administration to seek peace in Yemen.

To do so, go to the websites, and, scroll to the bottom where “contact us” will allow you to send your message to the White House and the U.S. State Department. And our U.S. senators must be encouraged to support this change in policy.

(* B P)

Biden’s policy shift means Saudi Arabia will have to adapt to regain favour with Washington

The combined pressure of the US policy shift and subsequent decisions are evidence that Saudi Arabia can no longer act with the impunity it did under Trump. The new policy gains the US a huge amount of leverage over Saudi Arabia and incurs a considerable amount of reputational damage on the Kingdom. The Biden administration hopes that this new leverage will drive the Saudis to seek to redeem their reputation by implementing domestic reforms and withdrawing from Yemen. By taking a more critical approach towards Saudi Arabia, Biden’s policy will partially disembroil Saudi Arabia from Trump’s ‘maximum pressure’ campaign against Iran, in which the Saudis were seen purely through the lens of strategically pressuring Iran. This will treat Saudi Arabia with a more bilateral view with regards to their activities, which the Saudis might benefit from.

Though the intimacy of the US-Saudi relationship may be impacted in the short-term, Biden’s administration is still operating on the premise that the Saudis are the most important US strategic allies in the region.

Because of this, there are sufficient mutual interests to keep Saudi Arabia a strong US ally in the medium to long-term, despite the policy shift. This is not least because so much of Saudi’s standing is the result of US backing, which the Saudis will seek to regain.

(* A P)

Biden Urged to Force End to US-Backed Saudi Blockade After Chilling Report on Starving Yemeni Children

"President Biden should demand: 'MBS, lift the blockade'... This is a moment for moral clarity and bold leadership."

Progressive members of Congress are demanding that President Joe Biden bring pressure to bear on Saudi Arabia to end its yearslong blockade on Yemen—which has been maintained with U.S. help—after new reporting provided a closer look at the horrific suffering caused by the kingdom's ongoing obstruction of food, medicine, and other essential supplies.

"With 400,000 children now at risk of starvation in Yemen, the U.S. must tell the Saudis in no uncertain terms: immediately end the blockade and let humanitarian aid in," Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) said Thursday.

"President Biden should demand: 'MBS, lift the blockade,'" tweeted Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.), referring to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. "They will fold. They are desperate for American military aid, troop presence, and investment opportunities. This is a moment for moral clarity and bold leadership."

Matt Duss, a foreign policy adviser to Sanders, noted that the "U.S. hasn't just 'partially funded' this war. We've provided the planes, bombs, targeting intel, and midair refueling."

"We are fully implicated in Yemen's destruction," said Duss. "We need to be an equal part of its reconstruction."

(B P)

Blank Cheques

The Biden administration has tried to give the appearance of a decisive break with the Trump era, but in the Middle East its policies have been more of the same.

The new US policy looks sane by comparison with Britain’s. But it would be naive to view the UK’s actions in isolation from American decisions. It is more likely that the ongoing British involvement was agreed in advance of Biden’s announcement. With UK and US support, the war will continue indefinitely. The British government refuses even to investigate allegations of war crimes committed by its side in the conflict.

(* B P)

Andrew Bacevich, The History of the Present

Someday, when a successor to Buzzfeed posts an official ranking of twenty-first century crimes, the vicious murder and dismemberment of Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul won’t even make it anywhere near the first tier. His assassination will, for instance, certainly trail well behind the George W. Bush administration’s disastrous 2003 invasion of Iraq, not to speak of various other U.S. military actions from Afghanistan to Somalia undertaken as part of the so-called Global War on Terror.

Whether explicitly or implicitly, President Bush and his successors cited those very “narratives of the twentieth century” to which Professor Conway refers to justify their interventions across the Greater Middle East. The most important — indeed beloved — narrative celebrates the U.S. role in ensuring freedom’s triumph over evil in the form of various totalitarian ideologies.

Attach all the caveats and exceptions you want: Hiroshima, Vietnam, CIA-engineered coups, the Bay of Pigs, the Iran-Contra scandal, and so on and so forth. Yet even today, most Americans believe and virtually anyone responsible for formulating and implementing basic U.S. global policy affirms that the United States is a force for good in the world. As such, America is irreplaceable, indispensable, and essential. Hence, the unique prerogatives that it confers on itself are justified. Such thinking, of course, sustains the conviction that, even today, alone among nations, the United States is able to keep its interests and “its most cherished democratic values” in neat alignment.

By discarding the narratives of the twentieth century, Conway’s History of the Present invites us to see this claim for what it is — a falsehood of Trumpian dimensions, one that, in recent decades, has wreaked untold havoc while distracting policymakers from concerns far more urgent than engaging in damage control on behalf of Mohammad Bin Salman. A proper appreciation of the History of the Present will only begin with the realization that the United States needs neither MBS, nor Saudi Arabia, nor for that matter a sprawling and expensive national security apparatus to police the Persian Gulf.

What this country does need is to recognize that the twentieth century is gone for good. Developments ranging from the worsening threat posed by climate change to the shifting power balance in East Asia, not to mention the transformation of American politics ushered in by Donald Trump, should have made this patently obvious. If Professor Conway is right — and I’m convinced that he is — then it’s past time to give the narratives of the twentieth century a decent burial. Doing so may be a precondition for our very survival.

Sadly, Joe Biden and his associates appear demonstrably incapable of exchanging the history that they know for a history on which our future may well depend. As a result, they will cling to an increasingly irrelevant past. Under the guise of correcting Trump’s failures, they will perpetuate their own.

(B P)

Fresh Faces, Old Policies: US Stance on Yemen Won't Change and Here's Why

However, Al Bukhaiti is sceptical about these and other measures the US is taking bringing about a much-needed resolution to the conflict.

"There is no trust in Washington. Their foreign policy doesn't change. The only difference is in the faces. After all, the war that was declared on Yemen erupted during the tenure of [former president] Barack Obama, a person who was given a Nobel peace prize and the one, who sealed the largest military deal with the Saudis and the Emiratis."

This is the reason why Al Bukhaiti is certain that Biden will not betray the American establishment's approach towards Yemen and the current US efforts to pose as the region's peace mediator are no more than a ruse, determined to "justify" the Saudi war against the Houthis.

"The US demanded that the Houthis stopped all their attacks against the Saudis. In return, they were promised to have direct talks with Riyadh, and Washington was presenting itself as a country that sought peace," said the journalist.

"When the Houthis rejected that ultimatum, [saying no progress was possible without the removal of the blockade], the US changed its stance, presenting them as an element attempting to hamper Biden’s peace efforts," he added.

(A P)

Film: After CNN report, @RepTedLieu calls for pressuring Saudis to end Yemen blockade. "We clearly supported the Saudi-led coalition that engaged in multiple war crimes." "If we want to seem like an honest broker, then actually start taking actions that don't preference one side"

(* A P)

US to resume aid to Houthi-controlled areas in Yemen amid desperate need, intensified fighting

Biden has vowed to end the war, but that effort has met fresh fighting.

The U.S. is set to resume humanitarian assistance to areas controlled by the Houthi rebels in Yemen, according to a notification from the Biden administration to aid groups and U.S. lawmakers Thursday.

The resumed funding, which will come with new monitoring mechanisms, could not come at a more urgent time.

"This is going to open up new avenues to save lives. Life-saving programs that were taken offline will be able to be resumed and that is going to have a really important impact on those communities that a year ago, for reasons that had nothing to do with their situation, lost aid that they had depended on," said Scott Paul, senior humanitarian policy advisor at Oxfam America, which operates in Yemen.

The U.S. Agency for International Development, or USAID, will allow up to $50 million to once again flow to Houthi-controlled territory, where approximately 80% of Yemenis live, a USAID official told ABC News.

But there will be new restrictions in place, according to the official, to "ensure we can closely monitor the programs" and "track different attempts at interference." Those include regular monitoring reports and updated assessments from aid groups that receive U.S. funding, as well as agreements between those groups and local Houthi authorities to ensure that U.S. assistance is reaching people in a timely manner.

and also

My comment: These US$ 50 million are much less that the US had given before.

(* A P)

Film: A briefing on Yemen’s humanitarian crisis

Tim Lenderking, US Special Envoy for Yemen, and Sarah Charles, Assistant to the Administrator of USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance, discuss the US policy response to conflict and humanitarian crisis in Yemen.

and reports of this briefing:

(* A P)

U.S. Yemen envoy says ceasefire plan before Houthi leadership, urges response

A “sound plan” for a nationwide ceasefire in Yemen has been before Houthi leadership for “a number of days,” but it appears the group is prioritizing a military offensive to take Marib, the U.S. special envoy on Yemen, Tim Lenderking, said on Friday.

“I will return immediately when the Houthis are prepared to talk,” Lenderking told the Atlantic Council think tank after a 17-day visit to the region to revive efforts to end the six-year conflict that is widely seen as a proxy war between Saudi Arabia and Iran.

“The U.S. and U.N. - we urge the Houthis to respond,” he said. “If we cannot make progress now, the country will spiral into greater conflict and instability.”

“We now have a sound plan for a nationwide ceasefire with elements that would immediately address Yemen’s dire humanitarian situation directly,” Lenderking said. “That plan has been before the Houthi leadership for a number of days.”

He provided no further details, and said the plan has Saudi support.

“Tragically, and somewhat confusingly for me, it appears that the Houthis are prioritizing a military campaign to take Marib ... over suspending the war and moving relief to the Yemeni people,” Lenderking said.

He announced that the United States would restore humanitarian aid funding for northern Yemen, and said Washington would work with the governments of Yemen and Saudi Arabia to find a way to deliver fuel to Yemenis who need it most.

Sarah Charles, a U.S. Agency for International Development official, told the webinar that “all parties” are interfering with humanitarian operations, delaying deliveries.

The “most egregious” interference has been by the Houthis in northern Yemen, she said, prompting the partial suspension last year of U.S. support to nongovernmental humanitarian groups that “cautiously” was lifted on Friday.

“We’ve seen some signs of decreasing interference in the north and more progress is needed,” she said.


(* A P)

Tim Lenderking announces Washington to resume aid to Houthi enclaves in Yemen

And while Mr Lenderking addressed Saudi ships blocking fuel shipments to Yemen at the Atlantic Council event, he said that Riyadh has shown commitment to ending the war.

“The fact that fuel ships are not moving is a genuine problem,” said Mr Lenderking. “The fuel is not only for motor vehicles. It’s for homes. It’s for hospitals. It’s for institutions.”

“I can tell you from having spent a considerable amount of time in Riyadh just in the past couple weeks, the Saudi leadership is prepared to address the conflict in a way that maybe they weren’t prepared to six months ago or 12 months ago, and they’re providing full support for my efforts. And I think that is absolutely critical. I’m looking for the same response from the other side. I’m eager for it.”

and also

(A P)

Some progress made toward ceasefire in Yemen -U.S. State Department

The U.S. State Department said on Thursday that “some hopeful progress” has been made toward a ceasefire in Yemen, but more commitment was needed from the parties to the civil war.

The comments were in a statement on a just-concluded visit to the region by Timothy Lenderking, the U.S. special envoy for Yemen, aimed at bolstering U.N.-led efforts to end the conflict and stem a growing humanitarian disaster.

Lenderking “devoted extra time in Riyadh and Muscat in an effort to push the parties closer to a ceasefire,” the State Department said. “While there is some hopeful progress, more commitment is needed from the parties.”

Full US statement:

My comment: Unless he doesn’t speak to all parties, this cannot work.

(* B P)

The hidden costs of US security cooperation

The United States bears responsibility and has tarnished its image by providing support and arms for those operations, primarily to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Much more needs to be done to ensure a peaceful resolution to the war in Yemen. But at least for now, with respect to the direction of U.S. policy in Yemen, we can breathe a very tentative sigh of relief.

But not for long. Because what has happened in Yemen is merely one symptom of something far deeper — the way the United States and other countries carry out security cooperation and assistance throughout the world. The case of Yemen is dire and tragic, and rightly has been the focus of much human rights attention. But there are many more people in places impacted by U.S. security cooperation and arms sales without the benefit of much media attention.

The modern approach to defense in the United States places a premium on security cooperation to shore up security around the world. It does this by cooperating with and assisting foreign security forces under the assumption that building the capacity of other security forces — military and police — allows those countries to take more responsibility for their own defense and reduces U.S. costs and involvement. It has grown as U.S. involvement has grown around the world. Given the Defense Department’s outsized budget, providing militarized assistance is often an easier way to address global crises than using diplomatic or economic instruments. The U.S. military and weapons are often not the best tools for addressing crises, but they’ve proven to be large, present, and tempting ones.

In theory, it’s not necessarily a bad idea. The U.S. military does not want or need to be present everywhere. The problem comes in its execution and in a lack of strategic oversight that can result in and perpetuate humanitarian catastrophes — in Yemen and beyond. It can also be at odds with the very long-term policies it’s meant to support, and sometimes makes little strategic sense at all.

(* A P)

Bipartisan group of US lawmakers: Iran deal must address ‘full range of threats’

Citing Iran’s ‘dangerous behavior,’ letter to Blinken says any nuclear agreement must also include Tehran’s ballistic missile program and funding of terror

A group of 140 members of the US Congress, 70 Democrats and 70 Republicans, sent a letter on Tuesday to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, urging him to ensure that any nuclear agreement or set of agreements that the Biden administration reaches with Iran “comprehensively address the full range of threats that Iran poses to the region.”

Citing Iran’s “dangerous behavior,” the letter stated that any deal “must address three core tenets: “their nuclear program, their ballistic missile program, and their funding of terrorism,” according to a statement by the pro-Israel lobby group AIPAC.

“As Democrats and Republicans from across the political spectrum, we are united in preventing an Iranian nuclear weapon and addressing the wide range of illicit Iranian behavior,” the letter read.

The letter was initiated by Rep. Anthony Brown of Maryland, a Democrat, and Rep. Michael Waltz of Florida, a Republican.

My comment: It’s not US business to decide whether a new Nuclear Deal should be necessary or not. The 2015 Deal is International Law and the US either can follow International Law and rejoin it and then have a leverage on Iran, combined to obligations binding the US, or not. There is no space for any new deal. Any supplement deal about the topics these lawmakers want of course also must include some more topics, this is Israeli nukes, US arms exoorts to Middle Eastern countries, US malign behaviour in the Middle East, US support for terrorists.

(* B P)

Progressives Are Losing Patience with Biden’s Iran Policy

The State Department declined my request for comment on Duss’s talks with the administration.) “The Biden team and I had been talking for several months about a State Department role, but I decided that the best place to keep working to support a progressive agenda is with Senator Sanders,” Duss told me in an interview.

Duss’s choice to remain independent from the administration reflects the concerns of a vocal faction of dovish foreign policy thinkers, who are increasingly signalling their dissatisfaction with Biden’s initial moves in the Middle East. On issues ranging from re-entering the Iran deal to re-evaluating Washington’s relationship with regional allies like Israel and Saudi Arabia, many on the left now believe that Biden’s team risks falling short of expectations set during and after last year’s presidential election. After a brief honeymoon period, it is rapidly becoming clear to this cohort that its efforts are better spent pressuring Biden from the outside rather than working in lockstep with the White House on foreign policy.

Much of the frustration with the Biden administration’s progress to date stems from its failure to swiftly rejoin the Iran nuclear deal

The 2015 JCPOA, one of Barack Obama’s signature international achievements, divided congressional Democrats as well as leading Jewish institutions. For progressives like Duss, it was a galvanizing cause, and represented a major victory against Washington’s so-called foreign policy “Blob,” which maintains a uniquely aggressive posture toward Iran.

But instead of following the advice of progressives and resuming compliance with the deal as quickly as possible, Biden’s team has dawdled, insisting that Tehran take the first steps toward complying with the agreement even though the US withdrew when Iran was cooperating. In the meantime, the administration has created new obstacles to diplomacy.

“The Syria strikes were disheartening, to say the least,” said Erica Fein, the advocacy director for the nonprofit Win Without War, which supports reentering the nuclear deal. “Syria is not a place that should be used to send messages back and forth between Iranian-backed proxies and the United States. You can’t bomb your way to peace.”

Trita Parsi—a co-founder of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, an anti-interventionist think tank, and a leading figure among Iranian American supporters of the JCPOA—agrees.

Joe Cirincione, the former president of the Ploughshares Fund, a distinguished fellow at the Quincy Institute, and a major figure in the campaign to support the Iran nuclear deal, said the failure to immediately reverse Trump’s withdrawal from the JCPOA has created a conundrum for the new administration. A number of senior administration officials “seem to have bought the argument that the Trump sanctions give us leverage that we can use to get concessions from the Iranians,” he said. But by getting into a military back and forth with Iran’s proxies, he argues, the US risks falling into a “commitment trap” in which threats must be backed up, retaliatory force must be matched, and reentering negotiations becomes more politically difficult for both sides.

In the absence of clear direction from Biden himself, the question of how to approach Iran has become a subject of heated debate within the president’s national security team. Multiple people I spoke with outlined a rough divide between a more dovish faction that prioritizes rejoining the deal—exemplified by Robert Malley, Biden’s special envoy to Iran, who has already faced significant attacks from the right—and a more hawkish faction, exemplified by Brett McGurk, a member of the National Security Council who previously served in the George W. Bush, Obama, and Trump administrations and was an architect of the military “surge” in Iraq.

Many progressives are now realizing that they may have to assume a more critical posture with regard to the administration in order to advance their priorities. “Ultimately our goal is to end the failed status quo foreign policy,” said Fein, “and we’re going to continue to pressure Biden and his team where we think they’re falling short.”

(A H P)

Restore and Expand USAID to Yemen!

Dear Secretary Blinken and Administrator Steele,
On Monday, March 1st, Sweden and Switzerland hosted a donor conference for Yemen with the goal of raising $3.8 billion in humanitarian aid. The United States had a direct role in creating the humanitarian crisis in Yemen and has the duty to provide ample relief. We, the undersigned, ask that USAID funding is restored to all parts of Yemen and that the United States dramatically increases aid to Yemen. The conference was hoping that the U.S. would pledge $1 billion towards the goal. Oxfam’s Fair Assessment said that the U.S. should pledge $1.2 billion. At the conference, the U.S. only pledged $191 million in additional aid, which brought the U.S. aid total to $350 million. It is shameful that the United States has manufactured bombs to destroy Yemen, but fails to pledge a sufficient amount in humanitarian aid.

Yemen needs billions of dollars in humanitarian assistance. The USAID funding that was cut off to 80% of Yemen in 2020 would not even scratch the surface of relief for Yemenis who are suffering from hunger and illness.

(B P)

US Dep. of Treasury: Yemen-related Sanctions

cp9a USA-Iran Krise: Spannungen am Golf / US-Iran crisis: Tensions at the Gulf

Siehe / Look at cp9

(A P)

Biden must learn from history, drop language of force against Iran: Official

An Iranian official says the Islamic Republic will never engage in any negotiations with the United States under pressure and threats, warning new American President Joe Biden against making the same mistakes that his predecessors made in their treatment of the Iranian nation.

(A P T)

Iran reports attack on its cargo vessel in Mediterranean Sea

An Iranian cargo vessel was targeted this week in a “terrorist attack” in the Mediterranean Sea, the country’s state TV reported on Friday. There were no casualties in the explosion, the report said.

The report quoted Ali Ghiasian, spokesman for the state shipping line, as saying that Wednesday’s attack damaged Shahr-e Kord, a commercial vessel traveling to Europe. Ghiasian said an “explosives device” damaged the hull of the ship and set off a small fire that was quickly extinguished.

and also

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Why Saudi Arabia won’t hit back at Iran

Attack on Saudi oilfields had all the hallmarks of an Iranian strike but Riyadh has good cause to keep its powder dry

The Houthis claimed responsibility for the offensive but the Saudis refuted their proclamation, pinning the blame instead on Iran. The Saudi military displayed wreckage of drones and missiles used in the operation that was indeed remarkably similar to Iranian technology.

Satellite images showed the storage tanks were hit from a northwest direction, which means the attack was probably launched from Iran. Yemen is the southern neighbor of Saudi Arabia. Iran has denied any role in the attacks.

But there is plenty of reason to doubt Iran’s claim.

Now with the latest attacks on oil facilities in Saudi Arabia, many wonder whether they will torpedo US President Biden’s early efforts to engage with Iran.

Some observers suggest the recent attack should be viewed as a message Iran is trying to impart that it would not stand for an increased US military footprint in the region and that it ultimately wants sanctions relief, without which it will not reciprocate Biden’s outreach.

“Iran is threatened by Gulf-Israeli rapprochement after the Abraham Accords, relative GCC unity after the al-Ula agreement, and the lack of sanctions relief ahead of a potential JCPOA nuclear deal renegotiation,” said Caroline Rose, a senior analyst and head of the Strategic Vacuums program in the Human Security unit at the Newlines Institute.

“Additionally, recent decisions from CENTCOM to identify alternative basing options in Saudi Arabian ports and air bases have created an incentive for Iran to pressure the Kingdom and create a sense of insecurity in an attempt to dissuade a more expanded US military footprint in the Persian Gulf,” she added.

Rose suggests by encouraging its proxy, the Houthis, to bump up attacks on critical targets on Saudi Arabian soil, Iran may be trying to gain leverage over the US in upcoming nuclear negotiations, even though they are not obviously imminent:

Other commentators believe Saudi Arabia, despite sustaining damage from the raids on its oil facilities, airports and infrastructure by the Houthis, has come to the understanding that it doesn’t behoove the kingdom to retaliate militarily against Iran.

That’s partly due to the policies of the new US administration on the Yemen war and expectations that it could facilitate peace talks in the region.

Other Middle East pundits share the view that Saudi Arabia is not prepared to countenance the costs of a new war by rising to the bait of Tehran.

“The decades-long standoff between Tehran and Riyadh does not seem to be on a de-escalatory route,” said Mohammed Soliman, a senior associate at McLarty Associates’ Middle East and North Africa practice. “An agreement that addresses Iran-backed militias activities in the region could be a start of de-escalation. However, we are still far away from this point.”

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Impasse Over Iran Nuclear Talks Sets Off International Scramble to Save Accord

Mr. Biden has his own reasons for a wait-and-see approach towards negotiations.

He appears to be torn between critics of Europe’s allies and Congress in broadening the nuclear deal over Iran’s ballistic missile program and limiting its support for proxy militias in the Middle East.

Although many senior administration officials had negotiated the nuclear deal while working for President Barack Obama, and still support it, they also say they are not ready to compromise further – especially Iran constantly tests Mr. Biden’s borders.

“Can you assure us that we are not making concessions just to have a meeting?” California’s Democrat representative, Brad Sherman, on Wednesday during a House hearing on the state’s Antony J. Mentioned the nuclear deal with Blinken, known as the Joint Comprehensive Action Plan.

“I can,” replied Mr. Blinken.

“Do we expect that before we relieve them of the restrictions that they will either be fully in compliance with the JCPOAA or on a negotiated path towards full compliance?” Mr. Sherman asked.

“Yes,” said Mr. Blinken.

The demands for a comprehensive settlement to address other Iranian threats echo the Trump administration’s goals of a pressure campaign against Tehran. But Mr. Biden’s deal has been calculated to assimilate Democratic critics of the 2015 agreement in order to “lengthen and strengthen” the deal.

Iran’s leaders have warned that extending the agreement is a non-starter, and European diplomats are concerned that it would be hampered by a full effort in the delicate negotiations.

“Once we take the first step, we can continue, or start talking about other pending issues,” Mr. Burrell said at the Policy Center, Atlantic Council. “But if you initially start talking about pending issues, you will never restart.”

Despite the deadlock, US and European diplomats said informal negotiations could begin in the coming weeks. When they do so, it is expected that the United States and Iran can agree to take simultaneous steps towards getting back into compliance with the 2015 agreement. =

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Israeli Strikes Target Iranian Oil Bound for Syria

Campaign against ships, using mines, shows an expansion of hostilities in the Mideast

Israel has targeted at least a dozen vessels bound for Syria and mostly carrying Iranian oil out of concern that petroleum profits are funding extremism in the Middle East, U.S. and regional officials say, in a new front in the conflict between Israel and Iran.

Since late 2019, Israel has used weaponry including water mines to strike Iranian vessels or those carrying Iranian cargo as they navigate toward Syria in the Red Sea and in other areas of the region. Iran has continued its oil trade with Syria, shipping millions of barrels and contravening U.S. sanctions against Iran and international sanctions against Syria.

Some of the naval attacks also have targeted Iranian efforts to move other cargo including weaponry through the region, according to U.S. officials.

The attacks on the tankers carrying Iranian oil haven’t been previously disclosed. Iranian officials have reported some of the attacks earlier and have said they suspect Israeli involvement.

Israel hasn’t commented previously on such incidents and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office referred questions to the Israeli military, which declined to comment on any Israeli role in the attacks on the Iranian ships. Iranian officials at the country’s United Nations mission didn’t respond to a request for comment.

(* B P)

Force of habit: Why the U.S. risks being sucked into a military showdown with Iran

Without a rapid and substantive pivot towards an aligning diplomatic strategy on Iran – something that the Biden administration talks about but has not yet acted on in a meaningful way – there is an acute risk of wider military escalation. A series of recent incidents in Yemen, Saudi Arabia, and the Gulf of Oman indicate just how febrile the regional environment has become.

Despite its repeated vows to end America’s ‘forever wars’, the Biden administration did not take long to carry out its first military strikes.

The narrative that controlled US counter-escalation will set the rules of engagement in Iraq has repeatedly proved to be false.

Despite his pledges to readjust US policy on Iran, Biden is still essentially pursuing the Trump-era maximum pressure campaign, designed to force Tehran to make concessions first. This may in large part be driven by domestic pressure to maintain a firm position on Iran, and Biden’s prioritisation of a domestic agenda – for which he needs congressional support. But this is the same approach that Biden’s team criticised during his bid for the presidency.

The US may feel a legitimate need to respond to attacks with military force but, unless it also presents a viable diplomatic offramp, the country risks being sucked into further escalation.

The only way forward is to swiftly re-energise diplomacy with Iran, a track on which Europeans should play a major role given the impediments to US-Iranian engagement. They should initially focus on pressing both Washington and Tehran to take steps towards rejuvenating the nuclear agreement, without which regional de-escalation is impossible to imagine.

Biden urgently needs to initiate serious confidence-building steps to revive the deal as part of a synchronised process, rather than continuing to insist that Iran return to full – or takes the first step towards – compliance with the agreement before the US follows suit. European states should help lead this process rather than take up positions that complicate efforts to reach an agreement between the US and Iran.

The US and Iran may believe that they are adept at managing the escalation and counter-escalation game. But there have been multiple occasions when events have come close to spiralling out of control. The countries now have a slender opportunity to make a clean break with the destructive Trump era, but the pathway is narrowing quickly. Western actors need to respond smartly if they are to avoid ongoing escalation. =

(A P)

Rouhani: US must honor commitments, lift sanctions for diplomacy to survive

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has told British Prime Minister Boris Johnson that the US must honor its commitments and lift sanctions on Iran if it seeks a diplomatic end to the stalemate surrounding the 2015 landmark nuclear agreement.

“If we are after diplomacy, the path is clear… It’s the lifting of sanctions and the US fulfilling of its commitments, and there is no other option,”

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How to Get America and Iran Back to the Negotiating Table

The biggest obstacles are neither diplomatic nor technical. They are political.

Unfortunately, the Biden administration has not yet outlined what a “credible path back to diplomacy” will look like.

Indeed, nearly two months into the new administration, maximum pressure remains the de facto U.S. policy. The longer the Biden administration waits to acknowledge what the Biden campaign already recognized—that maximum pressure advanced neither U.S. interests nor regional security—the more many Iranians will remain convinced that the United States is committed to regime change.

At best, this tactical gamesmanship wastes precious time, distracts from real priorities, and raises the cost of diplomacy for both sides. At worst, it could lead to an escalatory cycle that risks precisely the nuclear crisis that the 2015 deal was created to alleviate.

Taking a step back, direct negotiations between Washington and Tehran remain likely. Both sides want to preserve the deal. And the basic trade-off that enabled it—trading sanctions for centrifuges in the form of mutual compliance—remains. As during the original negotiations, restoring the agreement will require political capital and diplomatic creativity from both sides.

Once the United States is back in the accords, the Biden administration should explore renegotiating some of its sunsets. These issues are far more tractable from within a functioning multilateral arrangement than in the middle of an international crisis. But in any negotiation, to get something, you’ve got to give something. After three years of maximum pressure, Iran will surely have its own new demands.

Critics also note that the JCPOA doesn’t address Iran’s regional behavior. In fact, it wasn’t designed to. Nonetheless, the drama of the last six years suggests that the deal is likely to be sustainable only if supplemented by a parallel regional process—or processes—aiming to de-escalate regional tensions. The wars in Yemen and Syria are urgent priorities.

Constructing a regional dialogue to consider even some of this agenda is easier said than done. But it is precisely because the regional currents are so dangerous that such a dialogue is so needed.

(* B P)

President Biden Must Follow the Advice of Candidate Biden on Iran

Despite criticizing the maximum pressure campaign, the new administration is continuing Trump’s policies—and sending the wrong message to Tehran.

The United States is already nearly two months into Joe Biden’s presidency. Yet despite his campaign promise of returning to the Iran nuclear deal, the United States has still not returned to the agreement—also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA)—former President Donald Trump’s so-called maximum pressure sanctions have remained in place, and tensions with Iran have not de-escalated. Meanwhile, Iranians are soon heading to the polls for presidential elections in June, with the next Iranian president most likely shifting the political direction of the country. If Biden fails to take swift action to return to the JCPOA, this golden window of opportunity to revive diplomacy with Tehran will soon close and the path forward will get much more complicated.

Although Biden’s supporters have patiently waited for his administration to settle in over the past seven weeks, reviving diplomacy with Iran does not seem to be a priority. Instead, renewed airstrikes in Syria—in response to militia rocket attacks in Iraq—have raised concerns over further escalation with Iran, the prospect of more military confrontations in the region, and a permanent unraveling of the historic diplomatic achievement that was the Obama-Biden administration’s foreign-policy legacy.

More alarming are actions and statements by senior administration officials that appear to run counter to what Biden and his team had been saying for years in their outspoken criticisms of Trump’s Iran policy. On Feb. 18, State Department spokesperson Ned Price said the United States is ready to talk, but without any substantial steps or sanctions relief for Iran, the offer is little different than Trump’s own attempts at talks.

Trump may be gone; however, for ordinary Iranians living through a deadly pandemic and a devastated economy, nothing has changed.

On March 7, Secretary of State Antony Blinken tweeted, “Iran’s moving in the wrong direction” and Iran should “come back into compliance with its obligations,” all while the United States remains outside of the deal and in total noncompliance with its own obligations. And on March 2, a White House official told the Wall Street Journal that a review of sanctions could take months, contradicting Biden’s own comments last year when he urged Trump to take “immediate steps” toward sanctions relief in Iran during the pandemic.

So far, the Biden administration has not clearly communicated its plan for diplomacy with Iran, and statements by senior administration officials seem inconsistent with past criticism of Trump’s policy

Sanctions that impede Iran’s ability to fight the pandemic were inhumane under Trump and are still inhumane under Biden, who has yet to lift any of them. This is particularly troubling given Biden’s own statements on the topic.

Biden’s delay may send a signal to Tehran that promises to reverse Trump’s failed policy were election slogans rather than actual policy.

With every day that passes in which Biden has not returned to the nuclear deal and lifted sanctions on Iran, he is essentially continuing Trump’s Iran policy. This is not lost on ordinary Iranians, who in recent polls cited lifting sanctions on Iran’s central bank—critical to all humanitarian trade with Iran—as the most meaningful and positive action the Biden administration could take toward Iran. The expectation that Iran should change course while Biden maintains Trump’s maximum pressure policy in place is unreasonable, especially as Iranians continue to suffer under brutal sanctions.

Although Tehran started reducing its compliance with the nuclear deal one full year after Trump left the deal, Iran still remains a party to the agreement while the United States has completely abandoned it and is currently in total noncompliance. The Iranians made measured and reversible reductions to their compliance and maintained a strategy of patience awaiting the results of the 2020 U.S. election. Now, Biden’s delay may send a signal to Tehran that promises to reverse Trump’s failed policy were election slogans rather than actual policy.

Though Biden has only been in office for seven weeks, it seems he is wavering on his Iran promises and giving more space to the voices who spent years trying to sabotage the deal with Iran.

Biden will have to replace public posturing with serious steps to return to diplomacy. The best starting point would be easing sanctions on humanitarian grounds to ensure Iranians have the essential goods they need to combat COVID-19. These may have been Trump’s crippling sanctions until Jan. 20, but now they are Biden’s crippling sanctions—punishing an entire population during a deadly pandemic.

This good faith measure can restore hope for innocent Iranians and facilitate a return to compliance with the deal on both sides. Salvaging the nuclear deal requires bold moves from Biden—as bold as his 2018 comments. It was Trump who broke that agreement, but now Biden needs to repair it before it’s too late.

(B P)

@SecBlinken puts himself in a corner by saying that no sanctions relief will be given until Iran "is in full compliance" or on a path to it. If Biden doesn't want Obama's legacy to die on his watch, both Iran and the US may well need some flexibility on this point.

@SecBlinken unwisely commits to consult with Israel, Saudi & UAE before agreeing to sanctions relief - which is NECESSARY for the US to re-enter the JCPOA. Biden cant square this circle. ANY plausible JCPOA will upset Bibi, MBS & MBZ. Trying to appease them is a fool's errand.

(B P)

Iran hesitates on talks before elections

Amid uncertainty whether the Iranians are willing to move forward or not, Iran FM Zarif says "that is not the case."

Now that the US is considering a gesture for gesture idea to try to break the deadlock to get to talks on how the US and Iran might return to full compliance with the Iran nuclear deal, it seems there is some Iranian hesitation--perhaps reflecting an Iranian debate if they want to make progress before the Iranian elections in June.

A return to the nuclear deal by both sides before the Iranian elections could potentially boost turnout in favor of more moderate candidates or produce a surprise, one Iran expert characterized the potential concern on the part of the conservative Iranian leadership.

(A P)

US must lift Obama-, Trump-era sanctions before Iran returns to full JCPOA compliance: Security source

The US needs to lift the sanctions imposed on the Islamic Rebublic during the administrations of former presidents Barack Obama and Donald Trump before Tehran reverses its countermeasures and returns to full compliance with the 2015 nuclear deal, a source tells Press TV.

A senior Iranian security official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said on Wednesday that in addition to sanctions imposed on Iran by the hawkish Trump administration, the US needed to lift the Obama-era sanctions, including the Iran Sanctions Act (ISA) and the Visa Waiver Program (VWP).

(A P)

Iran rejects step-for-step JCPOA revival: Senior security official

A senior security official says Iran is opposed to a step-for-step return to the 2015 nuclear deal, adding that the country only accepts the lifting of sanctions in a verifiable manner before returning to full compliance with the multilateral agreement.

Speaking to Press TV on the condition of anonymity on Wednesday, the security official said that the new US administration has failed to lift the sanctions that the ex-team at the White House imposed on Iran after leaving the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in May 2018.

According to the official, the only way for Tehran to return to its JCPOA commitments is for Washington to lift all the sanctions.

If the sanctions are not lifted, he added, Iran will take further steps away from its commitments under the deal in the near future.

America’s mere words and superficial actions are unacceptable to Iran, the official said, stressing that the country will only accept the full removal of sanctions following verification.

He added that Iran will not hold any official or unofficial talks with the US before the removal of sanctions.

cp10 Großbritannien / Great Britain

(B P)

Is Labour's focus on war-torn Yemen evidence of a new ethical approach to foreign policy?

Millions of people are facing death by starvation because of the UK Government’s decision to halve aid to Yemen, according to Cardiff North MP Anna McMorrin, who in her capacity as shadow international development minister is leading a parliamentary push to restore full funding.

“From our conversations with NGOs and aid organisations the only way to prevent immeasurable suffering is to revoke the designation entirely. The UK Government must show diplomatic leadership on Yemen.”

On the issues of arms sales, Ms McMorrin said: “The government called for a global ceasefire at the UN to ensure the most vulnerable caught up in conflicts are vaccinated, which Labour fully supports, but this airbrushes over the fact that UK Government continues to fuel conflict by continuing arms sales to Saudi Arabia. While it’s giving £100m for humanitarian assistance, Britain is getting £5.3bn in arms sales.

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UK 'balancing books on backs of Yemen's starving people', says UN diplomat

Exclusive: former DfID secretary Mark Lowcock shocked by decision of Johnson’s government to cut aid

Ministers have decided to “balance the books on the backs of the starving people of Yemen” in an act that will see tens of thousands die and damage the UK’s global influence, the head of the UN’s Office for Humanitarian Affairs has said.

Speaking with rare bluntness after the UK more than halved its funds to help Yemen, the former permanent secretary at the Department for International Development Mark Lowcock said he was shocked by the decision. It is understood he was given no chance to appeal to the UK to rethink.

He described the UK decision as “an act of medium and longer term self-harm, and all for saving what is actually – in the great scheme of things at the moment – a relatively small amount of money”.

“The decision, in other words, to balance the books on the backs of the starving people of Yemen, has consequences not just for Yemenis now, but for the world in the long term,” he said.

(A P)

The UK is helping to fuel the conflict in Yemen

Yemen needs our support, urgently. Its people are on the brink of famine, yet the UK Government has cut vital aid to the country. Conflict is deepening the humanitarian crisis, yet the UK is authorising arms exports that risk fuelling the violence.

You can make a difference today by writing to your MP to call for change. Here's everything you need to know to help you do this.

The UK risks fuelling the conflict by allowing UK companies to sell weapons and by providing military support to Saudi Arabia – one of the major parties in the Yemen conflict. According to the UN, the UK has ‘continued their support of parties to the conflict including through arms transfers, thereby helping to perpetuate the conflict’.

(A P)

British Ambassador to Yemen: UK envoy to Yemen appalled by Houthi’s ‘inhumane’ treatment of migrants

Appalled by fire at Houthi-controlled migrant centre in Sana’a. OHCHR & humanitarian agencies need immediate, unrestricted access to site & those injured. A credible, transparent, independent investigation must be carried out, including a full account of those killed & injured

It is the Houthis inhumane treatment of migrants - including the creation of overcrowded conditions at the centre - that led to this terrible loss in human life. It is imperative that the Houthis change their policies towards migrants & provide them the basic dignity they deserve

My comment:

(B P)

Meghan Markle’s Blood Diamonds and Rot of the Royal Family

A few days before the now-infamous Oprah interview with Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, the British press reported that in 2018 Markle wore earrings gifted by Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman (MbS).

This episode, small as it may seem, offers a glimpse into the political role the British royal family plays in cementing the UK's power abroad. And the human consequences of the partnerships the family helps to forge deserve greater scrutiny. By choosing to wear MbS’ earrings, Markle abrogated her opportunity to show solidarity with the Yemeni population suffering under a brutal war led by Saudi Arabia.

Although it seems the provenance of the earrings was leaked by the British royal family, the Queen & Co. are instrumental in securing arms deals with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states, displaying a willingness to signal righteousness to distract from negative press coverage, whilst continuing to act in solidarity with their monarchal counterparts in the Gulf and the wider region.

The manipulation of the press coverage of Markle points to the bad faith of the British aristocracy - a bad faith that is willing to aid the supply of weapons used to murder children in Yemen, whilst throwing dirt at the wall in the hope it protects the under-worked, over-paid, scandal-ridden British royal family.

cp12 Andere Länder / Other countries

(A P)

EU-Außenbeauftrager fordert sofortige Waffenruhe im Jemen

Der EU-Außenbeauftragte Josep Borrell hat sich am Freitag in einem Telefongespräch mit dem jemenitischen Ex-Außenminister Ahmed bin Mubarak besorgt über eskalierende Spannungen im Land, insbesondere in der Provinz Ma'rib. geäußert.

"Die Europäische Union fordert alle Konfliktparteien auf, ihre feindlichen Aktivitäten unverzüglich zu beenden und umfassende politische Gespräche aufzunehmen, wobei die Bedeutung von Frauen im Friedensprozess hervorgehoben wird", sagte Borrell in dem Telefonat.

Er fügte hinzu, dass die Europäische Union alle Angriffe auf Zivilisten verurteilt.

(A P)

Yemen: EU High Representative/Vice-President Borrell speaks to Foreign Minister bin Mubarak

EU High Representative/Vice-President Borrell expressed deep concern about the intense fighting in Marib and other fronts and urged the Government of Yemen to explore with the UN Special Envoy Martin Griffiths all avenues for an immediate ceasefire. He reiterated the EU’s call on all parties to the conflict to cease hostile activities without delay

(* B P)

New winds are blowing in Turkey and the Arab world

New "peace-making" winds are blowing on Arab-Turkish relations and helping to ease the tension in the search for common ground. Flattering messages are being exchanged between Ankara, Cairo, and Riyadh, and similar messages will inevitably follow from other Arab capitals if things go well. It seems that the various parties are exhausted by the rampant and prolonged proxy wars and that we are facing one of the dynamics created by Joe Biden's victory in the US presidential election.

As for Riyadh, it looks as if hosting (albeit online) the G20 Summit provided an opportunity for it to thaw relations with Ankara. The phone call between King Salman and President Erdogan opened the door to subsequent calls and a meeting between foreign ministers on the sidelines of an OIC conference. This is a step forward on a long and thorny road. Now, the flattery and pleasantries exchanged between the two countries are almost continuous, and the offers from Turkey, in particular, to restore relations between the two countries are still raining down on Riyadh.

Although we don't know if they are facts or just rumours, the latest leaks mention an opportunity for Turkish-Saudi cooperation in Yemen, starting with a Turkish drone deal, which Riyadh seems interested in buying after the drones proved their effectiveness in Libya and Azerbaijan.

Moreover, both sides are concerned about the Biden administration's approaches, specifically in terms of human rights and the criticisms that the new US president has been directing at them.

Just as Libya was the gateway for Egypt to launch a public and secret dialogue with Turkey, the Gulf reconciliation has made Qatar this gateway for Saudi Arabia. In the steadily-improving climate of Saudi-Qatari relations, it apparently goes without saying that relations between Turkey and Saudi Arabia are likely to calm down, and Qatar may play a role in this.

The improvement in Turkey's relations with Egypt and Saudi Arabia leaves the UAE facing one of two options: either follow the same path or uphold its old position towards Turkey and the latter's role and relationship with the Muslim Brotherhood in the region.

(A P)

Iranisches Außenministerium: Saudi-Arabien muss Gemetzel im Jemen und Krieg gegen andere Muslime stoppen

(A P)

Leader: UN measures against Yemeni nation more hideous than US'

The Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei while condemning Saudi Arabian crimes against the Yemeni people, stated that the ugliness of the UN measures against the Yemeni people is worse than the US support of the Saudi regime.

(A P)

Deputy FM: Iran Ready to Help Any Talks to End Crisis in Yeme

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for the Political Affairs Seyed Abbas Araqchi reiterated the country's readiness to help any talks which terminate the war and crisis in Yemen.

"We have proposed an initiative for the crisis in Yemen since the beginning of aggression of the Arab Coalition, and we are always ready to help any talks that end the suffering of Yemeni people and this cruel war," Araqchi said in an interview with the Arabic-language al-Masirah news website on Wednesday.

(* A K P)


State-owned arms manufacturer Denel has come under fire from Members of Parliament for supplying deadly weapons to what has been labelled an “unjust war” in Yemen.

Denel is in a joint venture with German company Rheinmetall Waffe Munition and provides ammunition through the joint venture to countries like Saudi Arabia, who are involved in the war in Yemen.

In a hearing, the SOE on Wednesday briefed Parliament’s finance watchdog Scopa about its operations and annual report.

The conflict in Yemen, which has cost thousands of lives, seems to have been good for business for Denel.

The government-owned arms manufacturer is a minority shareholder in the Rheinmetall Denel Munition joint venture, with 51% being held by Rheinmetall Waffe Munition.

The joint venture is reported to be producing weapons, like mortars, that are used in what African National Congress (ANC) MP Mervyn Dirks called an unjust war.

"I want to know, your weapons with your joint venture partner Rheinmetall, South African weapons that are in Yemen killing people, I need to know the profit that Denel is making out of the war in that country?"

Scopa member Sakhumzi Somyo has also questioned Denel on how much it made from Yemen arms sales.

Acting CEO William Hlakoane said that he was not sure whether the weapons came directly from South Africa or from the holding company in Germany.

"We need to establish the facts, honourbale chairman, as to what type of weapons you are referring to."

(A P)

Israel's Netanyahu 'cancels trip to UAE'

Local media say Israeli prime minister will not now fly to Abu Dhabi on Thursday


(A P)

Israel’s Netanyahu cancels UAE trip in pre-election setback

(A P)

‘MBS ready to meet Netanyahu in Abu Dhabi,’ Emirati source says

Prime minister to make first visit to UAE since peace agreement.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman may meet in Abu Dhabi on Thursday, a well-placed Emirati source said on Wednesday.

“MBS is ready to meet Bibi,” the source said, confirming that talks are ongoing in the three countries to arrange the meeting.

Israel and Saudi Arabia do not have diplomatic relations, but ties between the countries have been warming, especially in cooperation against their shared adversary Iran. Netanyahu and MBS, as the Saudi crown prince is known, met in November of last year in the Saudi town of Neom, though neither has officially confirmed it.

Asked about meeting with MBS on Tuesday, Netanyahu quipped: “What is it like to ask questions you know you won’t get an answer to?”

Netanyahu plans to fly to the United Arab Emirates on Thursday, for the first time since its normalization agreement with Israel last year.

(A P)

Six Royal Saudi Air Force F-15SA Strike Eagle fighters will be deployed to Souda Air Base on March 13 along with support staff, engineers and ground personnel and will carry out joint training with the Hellenic Armed Forces in the Eastern Mediterranean.

My comment: Which country do the Greeks want to bomb into ruins?

(A P)

Bahrain: Police Beat, Threaten Children

Parents, Lawyers Barred from Interrogations, Hearings

Bahrain police beat children arrested in protest-related cases in February 2021 and threatened them with rape and electric shocks, the Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy (BIRD) and Human Rights Watch said today. Prosecutors and judges enabled the abuses. Police and prosecutors refused to allow parents or lawyers of the children, ages 11 to 17, to be present during their interrogations, and judges unnecessarily ordered their detention. One of the children spent his 12th birthday in jail.

“A police officer who threatens a 13-year-old with rape or electric shocks from a car battery is an abominable stain on Bahrain’s reputation,” said Sayed Ahmed AlWadaei, advocacy director at BIRD. “Bahraini police officers treated children as enemies who must be terrorized into confessing, while prosecutors and judges shut parents and lawyers out of proceedings.”

and Reuters report:

(A P)

Turkey condemns Houthi attacks on Saudi Arabia


(* A K P T)

Turkey planning to transfer terrorists from Syria to fight against Yemen

Various press sources revealed Turkish moves to join the ranks of Saudi-led coalition forces in Yemen, specifically in Ma’rib province, ShamTimes News Agency reported.

ShamTimes quoted informed sources in Idlib province, northern Syria, as saying that Turkey intends to transfer groups of Daesh and al-Qaeda terrorists to Ma’rib province, in order to strengthen the ranks of the Islah Party there.

According to the ShamTimes, representatives of the Turkish intelligence services have reached out to the leaders of tin the coalition-backed Hadi puppet government, in order to prepare to transfer Syrian mercenaries to fight in Ma’rib alongside Muslim Brotherhood militants.

The agency noted that Ankara has provided financial inducements for those who decide to move to Ma’rib, which includes a monthly salary of $1,500 plus $400 in feeding expenses.

The first batch of these 300 Syrian fighters are expected to be transferred within days.

(A P)

Russia FM slams Houthi attacks on Saudi oil facilities

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Wednesday condemned Yemen's Houthis' attacks on Saudi oil facilities, describing them as "unacceptable".

In a joint press conference with Saudi Foreign Minister, Prince Faisal Bin Farhan, in Riyadh, Lavrov said: "Removing the Houthis from the American terrorism list is not a blank cheque for them to continue with violence."

The top diplomat called on the warring parties in Yemen to negotiate and on the international community to exert maximum pressure on the Houthis to join the ceasefire.


(A P)

Russia's Lavrov says Yemen conflict needs to end, urges negotiations

(A P)

Foreign Minister of #Russia Sergey #Lavrov arrived in #SaudiArabia. (photos)

(A P)

Morocco to extradite Australian to Saudi Arabia, wife says

A Moroccan court has decided to extradite Osama al-Hasani, a dual Australian-Saudi citizen, to Saudi Arabia, his wife said on Wednesday, in a case that has concerned rights groups.

Hasani was arrested last month upon arrival in Morocco, where he had travelled to join his wife and baby daughter.

His wife, Hanae, cried as she told Reuters by phone: “I did not expect this verdict.”

A court in Saudi Arabia has sentenced Hasani, a businessman who previously worked at a Saudi university, to two years in prison.

and also

Remark: This is important and haunting as well. Osama AlHasani's family and #JamalKhashoggi's family are related by marriage

as a reminder:


(A P)

Extradition Of Dr Osama Al-Hasani Poses Grave Risk To His Life

In recent years, the Saudi authorities have used violent measures to silence dissidents abroad, as was seen in the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi. ALQST has documented a number of other cases in which the authorities have pursued activists and dissidents abroad with the aim of kidnapping or killing them. ALQST has also documented cases where the authorities have targeted individuals abroad, including through the use of Interpol mechanisms, by bringing fabricated or exaggerated criminal charges against them.

The Saudi judicial system is neither independent nor impartial

cp12b Sudan

(A P)

Sudan’s PM in Cairo to discuss Ethiopia’s Nile dam dispute

Sudan’s prime minister held talks with the Egyptian president in Cairo on Thursday as both nations seek to build a united front in the ongoing dispute over the controversial dam that Ethiopia is building on the Blue Nile.

Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok and President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi agreed that both governments should “work closely at this critical moment” until they mobilize international and regional players to help mediate a solution to the water dispute with Ethiopia, according to a statement by the Egyptian presidency.

(A P)

Sudan officials, Saudi crown prince talk Red Sea investments

Sudan’s prime minister and Saudi Arabia’s powerful crown prince met Wednesday to discuss Saudi investment opportunities in the Red Sea, the Sudanese government said, as the kingdom seeks to boost its influence across the strategic Horn of Africa.

The high-level Sudanese delegation flew to Saudi Arabia this week for a two-day visit as the northeastern African nation struggles to revive its ailing economy and secure a transition to democratic rule. After years as a pariah under now-ousted autocrat Omar al-Bashir, Sudan has increasingly returned to the international fold, overhauling its economy to attract badly needed foreign investment.

The meeting between Sudanese officials, including Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok, and Saudi Arabia’s de facto ruler, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, “was friendly and establishes a new chapter” in the countries’ ties, said the sparse Sudanese statement. It did not offer specifics on Saudi investment projects, but said talks focused on the “transformation” of the Red Sea into “a large development area to eradicate the roots of terrorism and poverty” and increase tourism.

cp13 Waffenhandel / Arms trade

(A K P)

Israel and UAE to partner in creation of anti-drone AI system

The artificial intelligence system is set to include soft kill solutions such as electronic jamming, and hard kill capabilities such as guns, missiles and lasers

An Israeli government-owned aerospace company has announced plans to partner with a United Arab Emirate's weapons manufacturer to develop an anti-drone system tailored to Abu Dhabi's needs, which likely includes defence against Yemen's Houthi group.

Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), in a statement on Thursday, announced plans to co-develop an advanced anti-drone system "to detect, identify, classify, and intercept a broad range of threats".

The group said the Counter-Unmanned Aircraft System (C-UAS) will include soft kill solutions such as electronic jamming and cyber takeovers, and hard kill capabilities such as guns, missiles, electromagnetics and lasers, as well as advanced command and control.

"The C-UAS is fully autonomous requiring no to limited human" supervision, the group said.

cp14 Terrorismus / Terrorism

(A T)

ISIS leader in Syria calls on al-Qaeda elements to fight in Yemen's Marib

Abdullah al-Muhaysini, goes by the name of “Abu Kadi”, a senior leader in al-Qaeda’s Syrian-based Nusra Front, renewed his call for supporters in the terrorist organizations in Syria, to fight in Marib city, in support of the collapsed coalition forces in the city,

“If Marib fell down, is the shaver (destructive),” al-Muhaysni, a Saudi cleric and one of the leaders of Daesh (ISIS) in Syria, said in an audio recording.

It comes after days of reports about Turkey’s involvement in the Saudi-led coalition against Yemen and the registration of Syrian mercenary fighters by extremist and Turkish army – backed factions in Syria to fight in Marib at a monthly salary of up to $4,000.

and also

referring to

(A T)

An acoustic speech by Sheikh Abdullah Al-Muhaysini to the people of Ma'rib entitled If you fail Marib, then it is by God that the shaver

My message .. May God have mercy on those who conveyed it on my behalf: From the land of the Levant to its twin in virtue and generosity To Marib glory and steadfastness To whom our Lord Almighty said about it: “A good town and a Lord is Forgiving” [Sabaa: 15]. To the last shield of the Arabian Peninsula

We inform you that in the land of Yemen we have our own circumstances and our exceptional situation, and we, by God, would love for our ranks to join your ranks, and we would love to see the pure feet of the sons of the Levant on our land and our good soil, had it not been for our enemy to be malicious and corrupt and clothed that God does not fear in a libel that he slanders or intrigue is not invading. In the minds of our spontaneous, kind people, which are made up of a tribal structure, they refuse and are sensitive to the presence of any element they consider outside their soil! Therefore, any public participation from which the enemy would benefit in inciting the tribes under his control, more than friends would benefit from it! And we, by God, would be able to break it and uproot it were it not for that agenda that distracts attention from the enemy. By fabricating side battles at times and by lettering the battle compass from its true course at other times,! We are sorry if we say that among the most prominent of these groups: the Transitional and Islah groups! Unfortunately, they are two groups led by them, and their most important joints are led by a group of claimants of noble lineage, and these are suspicious matter! Especially if we learned that the first recommendations that Khomeini made to the Council of Shiite Elders in Yemen “all claim to honorable lineage” on the day that they met him in the eighties of the last century was by directing them to penetrate groups and parties at the time! I

(A T)

Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) released a statement claiming an improvised explosive device attack on an al Houthi truck in central Yemen’s al Bayda governorate on March 6. AQAP also claimed an ambush on an al Houthi motorcycle in al Bayda governorate on February 18, killing one al Houthi militant.[i]

cp15 Propaganda

(A P)

UAE to launch world's first bachelor's degree in tolerance

The world's first Bachelor of Tolerance and Coexistence degree is coming to the UAE.

The Mohamed Bin Zayed University for Humanities on Thursday announced the launch of the one-of-a-kind degree programme, with courses starting in September 2021.

According to the university, the programme will be based on the seven pillars of the UAE National Tolerance Programme, and will include courses that promote the UAE's values of co-existence, as inspired by its late founder Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.

Comment: Nothing against students studying tolerance. But this is just more PR for the UAE

(A P)

As Biden pushes for peace, Yemeni rebels ramp up strikes on Saudi Arabia

Yemeni rebels have dramatically ramped up attacks on targets inside Saudi Arabia over the past month, complicating the Biden administration’s efforts to broker a peaceful resolution to Yemen’s years-long conflict and ease its humanitarian crisis. Since mid-February, Yemen’s Houthi rebels, backed by Iran, have claimed responsibility for sending dozens of armed drones and missiles into Saudi Arabia.

(A P)

Yemeni Vice President: Iran's Subversive Project Aims at Disturbing Security, Stability, in Yemen and Region

Yemeni Vice President Lt. General Ali Mohsen Saleh said that the Houthi coup militia through its terrorist acts against the Yemeni people and aggression on civil objects, in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, prove every day that it is no more than a subversive tool among Tehran's subversive tools, in the region.

(A P)

Cartoon: Houthi crimes against humanity

(A P)

The whole of the Middle East will pay the price for Biden’s Iran appeasement policy

At the heart of the Biden administration’s Middle East policy is a fallacy: that the region’s politics should be understood as a contest between Saudi Arabia and Iran, a conflict between two states that is also a sectarian struggle.

Seen from Tehran, the central contest in the region is between the American alliance system and Iran’s self-styled “resistance alliance”.

Biden’s misconception leads to a number of erroneous ideas: that the United States can play a neutral, mediating role between Riyadh and Tehran; that by distancing itself from Saudi Arabia, it creates opportunities for regional stability and understanding; and that it is the Saudi role in Yemen – and not the Iranian role – that has perpetuated the conflict in that country.

While escalating by attacking Saudi Arabia via its proxies is a core part of Iran’s regional policies, we must not forget that Iran has waged a forty-year war to spread its control across the region — not to compete with Saudi Arabia, but to undermine the American alliance system. The Biden administration’s resurrection of the Obama doctrine in the Middle East has breathed life into one of its most inaccurate and damaging myths: the centrality of a Saudi-Iran rivalry to regional politics.

Iran’s imperial project in Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon does not exist to reclaim influence from Saudi Arabia, but to upend the American security order in the Middle East. And, like Iran’s Foreign Minister, Iran’s network of terrorist groups in the region chant, “death to America,” not, “death to Saudi Arabia”.

Empowering Iran will come at the expense of not only Saudi Arabia, but at the expense of Iraqis, Lebanese, Syrians and Yemenis – by Mohammed Khalid Alyahy, the editor-in-chief of -English.

(A P)

Yemen: Iran’s Next Satellite State?

Given the relative success of this strategy for Iran’s goal of exporting its revolution across the region, Yemen looks to be next in line to be under the control of the Mullahs. The Houthis, Iran’s Yemeni Shi’ite proxy, are going strong in their war efforts.

Despite Saudi Arabia’s determination to prevent the permanent presence of what it sees as an extension of Iran on its southern border, the Houthis have shown themselves too resilient to the coalition’s airpower to be effectively defeated.

This is in large part because a steady supply of arms, funds and training from Iran has enabled the Houthis to build a robust military capability. Shipments of guns and advanced weaponry, including drones, drone boats, IEDs, ballistic missiles and naval mines, have been intercepted on their way to Yemen. Intelligence has also confirmed the presence of Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps and Hezbollah operatives in Yemen, thought to be there in a training capacity.

And so, with the help of Iran, and the divisions between their adversaries, the Houthis, although not able to dominate the entire country, are a dominant player in Yemen.

(A P)

Yemen: Carnage or Strategy? What is the War Really About?

Every new President is challenged by foreign adversaries early in their term to test how U.S. policy may change with a new administration. Iran did not wait long to send its proxies into combat against American forces and allies. In Iraq, Shiite militia groups launched rockets attacks which wounded several Americans.

In Yemen, Iran’s proxy Houthi rebels have stepped up attacks by drones and ballistic missiles against Saudi Arabia, targeting both population centers and oil industry targets.

The Biden administration has been sending mixed, but mostly weak, messages to Iran about the Yemen civil war since taking office.

The contradictions from one paragraph to the next concerning U.S. support, or termination of, in an existential conflict that has already spilled across Saudi Arabia’s border,

In 2014, after years of violence and insurgency, Houthi rebels (a Shia community) seized the Yemeni capital city of Sana’a, deposing the legitimate, internationally recognized government. Shiites make up about one-third of Yemen’s otherwise Sunni population.

The befuddled desire to stop the Houthis from taking control of Yemen and turning it into an Iranian satrap without helping our allies fight them is personified in the writings of Robert Malley, just appointed U.S. special envoy to Iran.

But now they feel another factor must take precedence over strategy.

The humanitarian crisis of civilian casualties, refugees, famine, and disease leads as always to the search for peace at any price.

It is an all too familiar refrain. It is not to be disputed or debated; it is to be dismissed because it is the nature of war.

The war in Yemen has given Iran both the motivation and the opportunity to flex its muscles, and it has obliged.” Will victory not give encouragement to Tehran for more aggression, especially if that victory is the result of American withdrawal of support for its allies? How credible will a U.S. deterrence strategy be if it has already declared the costs of war are unacceptable, a calculation with which Iranian experience does not agree? And what chance is there for the negotiated peace that Malley desires if the U.S. is bargaining from a position of self-imposed weakness?

(A P)

Despite U.S. Warnings, Yemen’s Houthi Rebels Escalate Attacks

The Biden administration’s current approach in Yemen may not produce the outcome it hopes for.

Biden’s concern for humanitarian implications in Yemen and his desire to end the gruesome six-year-long war makes sense. However, Iran is clearly emboldened by perceived U.S. concessions since attacks on the ground have only escalated. If the Houthis believe they will gain leverage by continued assaults in Yemen and Saudi Arabia, the humanitarian crisis and war itself will persist.

(A P)

Houthi Cross-Border Attacks Draw More Int’l Condemnation

Houthi crimes in Yemen and cross-border attacks against civilian targets in neighboring Saudi Arabia have drawn more international condemnation with a number of states calling for commitment to humanitarian laws and urging an immediate ceasefire in the war-torn country.

My comment: LOL. The Saudis do not realise what a bizarre propaganda this is, a) air force bases are no civilian targets, b) oil facilities could be discussed about, as the revenues finance arms imports and warfare. And, what really exists since 6 years: Saudi “cross-border attacks against civilian targets in neighboring” Yemen.

(A P)

The African migrants’ message to Yemenis: Learn dignity from us

The African migrants have refused to join [Abdlmalik Al] Houthi’s warfronts despite his offers and despite themselves being illegal migrants vulnerable to his threats.

They have refused to pay him money or give in to his stipulations.

They went into hunger strike, resisted his assaults and preferred death.

(A P)

Government says Iran is obstructing peace efforts in Yemen

The Minister of Foreign and Expatriates Affairs in Yemen's internationally recognised government Ahmed Awadh bin Mubarak on Tuesday said Iran's support to the Houthi militia is obstructing the peace efforts in the country.

Iran has succeeded in controlling the Houthi decision and turning Yemen into a bargaining chip to serve its expansionism agendas and projects in the region

(A P)

Yemen’s Houthis seek world stage for their threats

Iran has a habit of turning groups like the Houthis, Hezbollah and the Popular Mobilization Units in Iraq into terror armies that seem to sponge up most of the country around them.

Hezbollah now has a state attached to it which is called Lebanon. The Houthis seem to have a smaller state attacked to them which is called Yemen. And in Iraq the likes of Hadi al-Amiri and the Badr Organization seem to have sponged up much of what is known as “Iraq” which Iran increasingly sees as its near abroad.

The Houthi quest for regional power can be seen in how Iran’s state media boosts them.

Iran’s media and its regime is very good at reading US intentions. So are the Houthis, who apparently gain from Iran’s long years of diplomatic intelligence work. P)

State Department Frets Over Terrorists Acting Like Terrorists

(A P)

More Saudi coalition „We are benefactors“ propaganda

cp16 Saudische Luftangriffe / Saudi air raids

(A K pS)

[Hadi gov.] Army & coalition bomb militia fortifications western Marib

Yemeni armed forces artillery and Arab coalition air force on Friday shelled positions and gatherings of Houthi militia on separate fronts of Serwah district, western Marib.

(A K pH)

Film: The aggression aviation renewed its targeting of the Abu Nashtan Scientific Center in Arhab, March 11-2021

(A K pH)

[Sanaa gov.] Communications Ministry condemns targeting of communications networks

The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology condemned on Thursday the coalition's targeting of the communications networks and stations in Sa'daa and Sana'a provinces.

The ministry denounced the targeting of the aggression fighter jets with more than four raids, resulting in total destruction.

and also

(A K pS)

Coalition destroys second Houthi air defence system in Yemen's Marib

A Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen said on Friday its warplanes targeted a Houthi air defence system in a Marib province.

It was completely destroyed and foreign experts operating it were killed in the airstrike, it said in a statement carried by the Saudi press agency.

The agency shared a videotape of the strike when it hit the system.

(A K pS)

Coalition destroys Houthis' air defense system in Marib

The Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen destroyed on Wednesday a "hostile aerial target", belonging to the Iran-aligned Houthi forces in Yemen's Marib city, Saudi state TV reported.
The Saudi state news agency showed a video on Twitter saying the coalition "destroyed an enemy air defense system type SAM-6, that belongs to the Houthis," the agency cited the coalition.

and also


(A K pH)

More Saudi coalition air raids Saada p. / Marib p., Saada p. Several prov. / / / Sanaa city Saada p., Bayda p. Various prov. Saada p., Sanaa city

cp17 Kriegsereignisse / Theater of War

Siehe / Look at cp17a, cp18

Im Jemen herrscht ein militärisches Patt. Eine größere Offensive mit größeren Erfolgen und Geländegewinnen für eine Seite bleiben seit der Offensive der saudischen Koalition gegen Hodeidah im Jahr 2018 aus. Kleinere Offensiven, ständige gegenseitige Angriffe und Gefechte mit Toten auf beiden Seiten und Opfern unter der Zivilbevölkerung gibt es aber ständig. Besonders betroffen sind die Provinzen Hodeidah, Taiz, Al Bayda, Al Dhalea, der Bezirk Nehm in der Provinz Sanaa, die Provinzen Al Jawf, Marib, Hajjah und Saada.

There is a military stalemate in Yemen. A larger offensive with greater successes and territorial gains for one side has been absent since the Saudi coalition's offensive against Hodeidah in 2018. Smaller offensives, constant mutual attacks and skirmishes killing fighters of both sides and causing victims among the civilian population are constant. The provinces of Hodeidah, Taiz, Al Bayda, Al Dhalea, the district of Nehm in the province of Sanaa, the provinces of Al Jawf, Marib, Hajjah and Saada are particularly affected.

(A K pS)

Photo: A bunch of children captured recently while fighting for Houthis in Aljawf

(A K pS)

Shia extremists continue incessant sniper murdering of children in Yemen’s Taiz

Donya, a seven-year-old girl, (pictured) was wandering aimlessly near her home in downtown Taiz “before the sunset of Friday” when a Houthi sniper “stationed in Alsallah hilltop” gunned her down by a single bullet rendering dead, a local source said.



(A K)

[Hadi] Yemeni gov't troops rage fighting against Houthis in Hajjah


(A K pH)

[Sanaa gov.] Yemeni forces win victory in Hajjah border districts (photos)

(A K pS)

Houthi terrorists bomb school in Taiz

The sources said the militants planted explosives in al-Anwar School in Maqbana district, which it uses as a military site, and blew it up ahead of the expected arrival of the marching armed forces that seek to liberate the province.

(A K pS)

[Hadi gov.] Army liberates new positions west of Taiz, approaches Al-Barh area

(A K pS)

Film: Yesterday , [Hadi gov.] Governor of #Taiz: -Declared General Mobilization and called for arms to complete the liberation of the governorate from Houthis; -Issued amnesty for Houthi fighters who surrender to the govt forces peacefully.

(A K pS)

[Hadi gov.] Yemen’s army brings partial end to Houthi siege of Taiz

Yemen’s army on Wednesday announced it had partially broken a six-year siege of the southern city of Taiz by the Iran-backed Houthis.

Spokesman Col. Abdul Basit Al-Baher told Arab News that troops had seized control of several mountain locations on the western edges of the city and reopened a road to western areas on the Red Sea.

For the first time in years, soldiers from the Taiz axis met other government troops from the Giants Brigades (military unit fighting for the government) in a liberated area in Al-Wazyia after breaking the last Houthi line of defense that had long-separated them.

“This is an important development since it not only breaks the siege but unifies the fronts against our common enemy,” Al-Baher said, adding that troops were currently consolidating gains in Al-Wazyia as other forces pushed toward Al-Bareh.

If the advances continued at the same speed, government troops would be able to open another strategic road linking the city with Hodeidah and other Red Sea coastal areas, Al-Baher said.

and also



cp17a Kriegsereignisse: Schlacht um Marib / Theater of War: Marib battle

(A K pS)

[Hadi gov.] Army’s spokesman: 60% of Houthi militia’s combat equipment destroyed in Marib’s battle

(A K pH)

Marib Media Center reveals kidnapping 150 citizens by aggression mercenaries

More than 150 citizens, including 15 women, were kidnapped by the US-Saudi aggression mercenaries in Marib within a month, Marib media center revealed on Friday.

According to statistics released by the center, al-Islah militia carried out raids and kidnappings in a number of neighborhoods in the city and camps for displaced persons, and the areas of Al-Menin, al-Faw, and al-Jifina, and arrested dozens of citizens, including women and children, and took them to secret prisons.

The statistics indicated that of the abductees, two girls were in the fourth grades, who were abducted for tearing up photographs of the killed AbdulGhani Shaalan.

The center confirmed that the abductees were hidden and prevented from communicating with their families, and were subjected to ill-treatment and psychological and physical torture to force them to confess to fabricating charges against them.

He said that the mercenaries intensified kidnappings, raids operations, and restrictions on the freedoms of citizens as the army and popular committees approached Marib city. He pointed out that the majority of arrests are made because of family or regional affiliation.

and also

(B K pH)

[Sanaa gov.] Yemeni Forces Continue Struggle Against Saudi-Led Forces, Establish Security in Areas of Ma’rib Province

Yemen’s Army and its allied fighters from Popular Committees successfully established security in areas in Jabal Murad District, located in the Southwest of Ma’rib province, after ridding the areas of the Saudi-led coalition’s forces.

Local sources said on Thursday that the Yemeni forces continued to close in on the invading coalition forces in the Southwest of Ma’rib province, Yemeni media reported.

Clashes are still ongoing between the two sides in Haid al-Ahmad and Wadi al-Awsal regions, the sources added.

There are also reports of widespread collapse of the ranks of the invading coalition forces.

(* B H K)

Yemen war: mass displacement fears as fighting intensifies in Marib

Development threatens to exacerbate what is already the world’s worst humanitarian crisis

Residents in the Yemeni province of Marib are bracing for what could be the worst mass displacement of the war as a Houthi rebel offensive intensifies, leaving more than 2 million people trapped.

Marib, which is controlled by parties loyal to the Yemeni government, has faced intermittent attacks from rebel forces over the last year as the Houthis have steadily gained ground in the area. A renewed assault since last month, however, has quickly morphed into one of the most ferocious battles of the seven-year-old war.

The frontline is getting closer to Marib city – a development that threatens to exacerbate what is already the worst humanitarian crisis in the world and severely undercut the peace process.

Ballistic missiles, drones and other projectiles are hammering the town and its outskirts, while the Saudi-led coalition supporting the Yemeni government has stepped up bombing of Houthi positions across the country. Estimates vary widely but several hundred combatants and scores of civilians are believed to have been killed in the violence.

There are 138 poorly serviced displacement camps in the area, some of which have been hit in the recent violence. Five camps have been abandoned and their residents relocated since February, Yasmin al-Qadhi, the head of the Marib Girls Foundation, said in a media briefing on Wednesday.

Hamas al-Muslimi, a student who has lived in Marib for several years, said: “We are worried the fighting is going to head towards another bad turn. It’s very unstable. The fighting is just a few kilometres away now … but there is no other place for us to go.”

(A K)

Houthis' missile hits Yemen's Marib: source

A ballistic missile fired by Houthi militia hit a building near a government military compound in Yemen's central city of Marib on Thursday, a local government security source told Xinhua.


(A K pS)

Another Houthi missile landed on a residential neighborhood of Rawdha northern #Marib city this afternoon. The missile struck a house, which was ,fortunately, under construction. This is the second Houthi missile on Marib in 24 hours (photos)

(A K pS)

Houthis fire ballistic missile on Marib, injure three civilians: Sources

Houthis fired a ballistic missile on the government-held Marib city this Thursday evening, injuring three civilians, local sources said.


(A K pS)

Houthis target civilians with missile in Marib as [Hadi gov.] Yemeni army advances

The Iran-backed Houthi militia fired a ballistic missile towards civilians in Yemen’s Marib, the Yemeni army told Al Arabiya on Thursday.

The Yemeni army has made great advancements in Marib against the Houthis, Al Arabiya cited an official from the army as saying.


(A K)

Ballistic hits the Ministry of Defense in Marib

On Thursday, a violent explosion rocked the city of Marib again in ballistic shelling targeting the headquarters of the Ministry of Defense. Sources in the city said that a ballistic missile hit the headquarters of the Ministry of Defense, and columns of smoke and dust were seen rising from the bombing site. She added that ambulances rushed to the headquarters of the ministry, which is likely to cause deaths and injuries.

(* B K pH)

Why Washington Messages to Stop Liberating Marib?

The US sponsor of the Saudi-Emirati alliance is mobilizing all its capabilities in order to prevent the liberation of Marib Governorate by Yemeni Army and Popular Committees. Westerners see it as a "terrible setback" for Riyadh as it puts all its capabilities on the Marib front.

At this time, messages from Washington are sent to officials in Sana’a governorate, through mediators, stating the need to stop its movement towards the Marib governorate center. However, the Army continues its operations, which confirms that it will not stop until all the districts of Marib are liberated.

In recent days, many Western studies and research have been published that talk about the battle of Marib as a decisive stage in the course of the war. They mentioned the vital geographic location of the governorate, and its military and economic advantages.

These studies unanimously agree that the Saudi-backed Hadi Governorate will lose a lot if it fails in the battle of Marib, while Sanaa will be able to impose its conditions in any future negotiations.

The US Jamestown Foundation, published an article considering that the battle for Marib will determine the fate of Yemen in all respects for years, pointing out that if the Army succeeds in liberating the governorate, the Saudi-backed Hadi forces will receive a blow that may not recover it.

Based on these considerations, the leadership of the US-Saudi coalition, along with its mercenaries, assumed the battle of Marib of an extra importance. Hadi's forces mobilized the forces of three military regions, in an unprecedented battle in Yemen's modern history.

cp18 Kampf um Hodeidah / Hodeidah battle

Seit dem Abkommen von Stockholm vom 13. Dezember 2018 gibt es einen Waffenstillstand für Hodeidah. Zwar bleiben größere Offensiven aus, kleinere Gefechte gibt es aber laufend, und beide Seiten werfen sich ständig Verstöße gegen den Waffenstillstand vor.

Since the Stockholm Agreement of December 13, 2018, a ceasefire has been in place for Hodeidah. There are no major offensives, but smaller battles are going on and both sides constantly are accusing each other of violating the ceasefire.

(B K pS)

Film: Houthi shells killed their parents and deprived the child Abdo and his two sisters of their childhoods

(A K pS)

Heavy clashes break out between [Hadi gov.] Yemeni army, Iran-backed Houthis in Hodeidah

(A K pS)

A man has been killed in the explosion of a Houthi landmine in south Hays./24 Post.

(A K pS)

Film: A citizen was injured when a mine exploded from the remnants of the Houthi militia in the Dhubab District

(A K pH)

Daily violations, as claimed by the Houthi side

March 12:

March 11:

March 10:

cp19 Sonstiges / Other


Photos: Peter Schlesinger Documents a Yemen That No Longer Exists

In his diary entry for Sunday, February 8, 1976, Schlesinger wrote, “Long drive all way to Saada and back. Fantastic.” Now we can take that long drive with him.

Vorige / Previous:

Jemenkrieg-Mosaik 1-725 / Yemen War Mosaic 1-725: oder / or

Der saudische Luftkrieg im Bild / Saudi aerial war images:

(18 +, Nichts für Sensible!) / (18 +; Graphic!)

Liste aller Luftangriffe / and list of all air raids:

Untersuchung ausgewählter Luftangriffe durch Bellingcat / Bellingcat investigations of selected air raids:

Untersuchungen von Angriffen, hunderte von Filmen / Investigations of attacks, hundreds of films:

07:32 13.03.2021
Dieser Beitrag gibt die Meinung des Autors wieder, nicht notwendigerweise die der Redaktion des Freitag.
Geschrieben von

Dietrich Klose

Vielfältig interessiert am aktuellen Geschehen, zur Zeit besonders: Ukraine, Russland, Jemen, Rolle der USA, Neoliberalismus, Ausbeutung der 3. Welt
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Dietrich Klose