Krieg im Jemen-Neue Artikel zum Nachlesen 133

Yemen Press Reader 133: Mittäterschaft bei Kriegsverbrechen - Flüchtlinge aus Afrika im Jemen - Obama-Besuch in Riad und das Verhältnis USA-Saudis - Implosion des Hauses Saud - Friedensgespräche

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UK, US, UN complicity in war crimes - Refugees from Africa in Yemen - Obamas visit to the Saudis and US-Saudi relationship - Implosion of the house of Saud - Peace talks have begun

Let us never forget that government is ourselves and not an alien power over us. The ultimate rulers of our democracy are not a President and senators and congressmen and government officials, but the voters of this country. Franklin D. Roosevelt

Comment: Bygone times...

Schwerpunkte / Key aspects

Klassifizierung / Classification

cp1 Am wichtigsten / Most important

cp2 Allgemein / General

cp3 Humanitäre Lage / Humanitarian situationcp4 Kulturerbe / Cultural heritage

cp5 Nordjemen und Huthis / Northern Yemen and Houthis

cp7 UNO / UN

cp8 Saudi-Arabien / Saudi Arabia

cp9 USA

cp10 Großbritannien / Great Britain

cp11 Deutschland / Germany

cp12 Andere Länder / Other countries

cp13a Waffenhandel / arms trade

cp13b Flüchtlinge / Refugees

cp14 Terrorismus / Terrorism

cp15 Propaganda

cp16 Saudische Luftangriffe / Saudi air raids

cp17 Kriegsereignisse / Theater of War

cp18 Sonstiges /Other

Klassifizierung / Classification




(Kein Stern / No star)

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

cp1 Am wichtigsten / Most important

21.4.2016 – UK Column News (** B K P)

Film: Yemen: Vanessa Beeley on UK Column Discussing UK US and UN Complicity with Saudi War Crimes.

Mike Robinson speaks to Vanessa Beeley, who gives a typically superb analysis of the Yemen crisis - a war which still received far too little coverage in the corporate media.

My interview with Mike Robinson of UK Column on the ongoing Saudi violations of the UN imposed ceasefire in Yemen, the delay of the peace talks in Kuwait and the UK, US, NATO criminal support of the Saudi genocidal war of aggression against the Yemeni people.

20.4.2016 – Al Monitor (** A H K)

For some fleeing conflict, even Yemen is a haven

Thousands of Africans fleeing the misery in their countries continue to seek refuge in Yemen, which itself is suffering the ravages of civil war.

One of the most striking paradoxes generated by war and migration in the Middle East is that the war in Yemen, raging since the spring of 2015, has not scared off boats packed with African immigrants heading toward this impoverished country.

Africans fleeing the despair and hell of conflicts on the other side of the Red Sea, in Somalia, Djibouti and Eritrea, still flock to Yemen, which is also plagued by misery and a bloody armed conflict.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) reported Jan. 19 that around 92,000 people reached Yemen’s shores by boat in 2015. It said the number is one of the highest annual totals recorded over the past decade, and two-thirds of these immigrants reached Yemen since March 2015, when the conflict began.

Yemen is a miserable and doomed "escape" for those who fled conflicts and suffering in their homeland to save their lives. When immigrants, mostly from Somalia, reach the west coast of Yemen, they are hosted in the Kharaz refugee camp, which is about 1,500 square meters (roughly one-third acre) in size and about 136 kilometers (84 miles) from Aden. The camp was established in 2000 in a secluded and harsh place where temperatures in the summer can reach 50º C (122º F).

The UNHCR receives the refugees, records their data and gives them identity cards to protect them from being forcibly deported to their country of origin. Yet many refugees overlook this protocol and head toward Aden or Sanaa with no identity papers, making yet another harsh and expensive trip.

Said Wael Mohamed Hassan, a human rights activist, lives in Lahij, the province where the Kharaz camp is located. He told Al-Monitor, “The camp consists of 83 residential units of 25 houses, each including a family or two.”

Most of the refugees in Kharaz are Somalis; the camp hosts nearly 17,000 refugees from that country, which has been plagued by a civil war for almost two decades.

The UNHCR said on its website, "Tragically, more people continue to lose their lives trying to cross the sea in overcrowded, unseaworthy boats.”

The Somali man added, “I thought that once in Yemen I would have a fresh start, but I was mistaken. I have a miserable life, I did not find a job and I failed to [make it] into Saudi Arabia because of the war."

“But at least I'm still alive,” he added.

Many Africans view Yemen as a gateway to other parts of the Middle East, as it shares a border with Saudi Arabia, which hosts millions of foreign workers. Immigrants with high hopes are shocked when they reach Yemen and witness the ruin inflicted by its devastating civil war.

Despite the refugees' dire conditions, there are no Somali beggars in Sanaa, unlike the many poor Yemenis seen in the capital’s streets. Somali refugees forge a living out of their perseverance. Most of the men wash cars for a maximum of $2 in popular markets, while women work in the homes and offices of affluent families. The women serve drinks and clean offices for $200 a month in the best-case scenarios.

Somali refugee Othman Omar told Al-Monitor he has spent 20 of his 29 years in Sanaa. "I have not received any financial aid or in-kind allowance from any international organization. I have been washing cars to provide for my family.”

Another refugee told Al-Monitor on condition of anonymity, “I received $300 a month from the UNHCR, but the amount was cut to $150.”

A third refugee said, “I only get $100, which is not enough in light of the high food prices.”

These refugees were sitting in the shade on the sidewalk in Sanaa, with old pieces of cloth on their shoulders and buckets of soapy water, waiting for a driver to give them the sign to wash his car.

In addition to the harsh living conditions, the refugees are at high risk. Omar told Al-Monitor, “The Houthi militants, who control Sanaa, are forcing us to fight in their ranks, against their opponents.”

He added, “They took 30 Somalis to fight in their ranks. I even know some of them. Why have we fled our country to Yemen? Had I wanted to fight, I would have stayed in Somalia. We have fled death. Now, we fear that they will force us to join the Yemeni war.”

The number of immigrants in Sanaa, Aden and Lahij is unknown. Al-Monitor was unable to secure any figures from the UNHCR offices in Sanaa and Aden – by Ahmed Alwly

22.4.2016 – Time (** A P)

The U.S. Might Be Better Off Cutting Ties With Saudi Arabia

Our close association could undermine America’s role in the Middle East

It cannot be denied that the U.S.-Saudi relationship has soured in recent years, with officials in both countries now openly admitting to cracks in the alliance.

Even on the still-pertinent issue of counterterrorism, though there has been some effective coordination between the U.S. and Saudi Arabia since 2001, such cooperation has often been undermined by the Saudis’ continued spread of extreme forms of Islam, as well as the Kingdom’s unwillingness or inability to more effectively interdict its citizens’ financial support for terrorism.

Indeed, much of America’s perceived abandonment of the Saudi alliance can actually be better understood simply as the rational pursuit of our own strategic interests. It’s simply that—unlike during the Cold War—our interests today often differ from Saudi interests.

Even with this growing strategic divide between the two countries, the U.S. often still reflexively supports many Saudi regional goals and actions.

Unfortunately, Yemen is not unique; there are many other cases where America’s close association with Saudi Arabia may actually undermine our security. Indeed, Saudi Arabia’s main regional rival, Iran, is often accurately accused of playing a destabilizing role in the Middle East. Yet Saudi leaders’ inclination to view every foreign policy problem through the lens of this rivalry has in recent years led them to undertake similarly destabilizing actions.

These include not only the massive quantities of weapons they funneled to various rebel groups during the early years of the Syrian civil war, but also Saudi involvement in post-Arab Spring crises in Yemen, Bahrain and Egypt.

Our typically close support of Saudi Arabia can even enable this bad behavior. For example, it is doubtful whether Saudi Arabia could have undertaken its disastrous Yemen intervention without U.S. technical support.

Ultimately, our strategic differences with Riyadh will only continue to grow, a fact that the President’s valedictory tour cannot change. In the long-run, our close association with Saudi Arabia is actually likely to undermine America’s role in the Middle East, particularly if the Saudis continue their current destabilizing approach to regional politics. Rather than debating how to repair the relationship, therefore, America’s leaders would be better to ask whether it should be repaired at all – by Emma Ashford, research fellow at the Cato Institute.

21.4.2016 – Democracy Now (** A K P)

As Saudis Continue Deadly Bombing of Yemen, Is Obama Trading Cluster Munitions for Riyadh's Loyalty?

President Obama’s fourth visit to Saudi Arabia for a meeting with leaders of the Gulf Cooperation Council comes as human rights organizations have been pressing Congress to block arms sales to the kingdom in the wake of Saudi-led coalition strikes in Yemen. We speak with William Hartung, senior adviser to the Security Assistance Monitor, who recently wrote in The New York Times that "Obama Shouldn’t Trade Cluster Bombs for Saudi Arabia’s Friendship."

WILLIAM HARTUNG: Well, under the Obama administration, we’ve made more arms deals with the Saudis than in other—any other time in history. And it’s been the full gamut. They’ve been combat ships, missile defense systems, fighter planes, attack helicopters, guns, bombs, missiles—basically, an entire arsenal. And on top of that, they are providing targeting information to the Saudis, refueling their aircraft. So they’re right in the middle of this conflict. And I think there’s a couple reasons for that. One is this notion of reassuring the Saudis about Iran. One is the underlying issue of oil politics, which I don’t believe has gone away. And one is the fact that it benefits large numbers of weapons contractors, like Boeing and Lockheed Martin and others.

NERMEEN SHAIKH: Well, I mean, one of the justifications that U.S.—some U.S. officials have made about continuing arms sales to Saudi Arabia is that their precision bombs are actually diminishing the number of civilian casualties in Yemen.

WILLIAM HARTUNG: Well, that’s an outrageous claim. They’re trying to divert attention. Obviously, it’s not even clear that the Saudis are making any effort to protect civilians. So, if you’re aiming at civilians, regardless if the bombs are accurate or inaccurate, you’re committing a war crime. And the Saudis have blocked an independent U.N. investigation of what’s going on there, with the tacit support of the United States. So, if they want to have an effect on civilian casualties, they should cut off the bombs and missiles, they should push for an independent investigation. And the notion that more accurate bombs somehow solves this problem is not only outrageous, I think it’s unconscionable.

WILLIAM HARTUNG: The United States has no business arming this regime. And I think relations—this notion of favoring them in any way, I think, is unacceptable, given both their internal policies and what they’re doing in Yemen. If any other country in the world were doing this, they would rightly be treated as a pariah. And I think the administration should do so.

21.4.2016 – CNN (** A P)

White House: Obama 'cleared the air' with Saudi Arabia

The White House moved to tamp down suggestions that ties with Saudi Arabia are fraying, with administration officials saying that President Barack Obama "really cleared the air" with King Salman at a meeting Wednesday.

Yet even as White House officials stressed that the leaders made progress, a prominent member of the Saudi royal family told CNN "a recalibration" of the U.S.-Saudi relationship was needed amid regional upheaval, dropping oil prices and ongoing strains between the two longtime allies.

Obama landed in Riyadh earlier Wednesday for a summit with Gulf leaders and spent two-and-a-half hours meeting with the 80-year-old monarch on issues that have recently strained the alliance, including the conflict in Yemen, the role of Iran, Lebanon's instability and the fight against ISIS, U.S. officials said.

Statements after the meeting made clear that deep differences remain on several of these points, with the two sides agreeing to disagree and a U.S. official characterizing the encounter as the start of a discussion rather than a venue for solutions.

But the two leaders glossed over some of the thorniest matters, including a Saudi threat to dump U.S. assets if Obama signs into law a bill that could make the kingdom liable for damages stemming from the September 11 terror attacks.

There is going to have to be "a recalibration of our relationship with America," former Saudi Intelligence Chief Prince Turki Al-Faisal told CNN's Christiane Amanpour. "How far we can go with our dependence on America, how much can we rely on steadfastness from American leadership, what is it that makes for our joint benefits to come together," Turki said in a significant departure from usual Saudi rhetoric. "These are things that we have to recalibrate."

For all the crosscurrents buffetting U.S.-Saudi relations, analysts and former officials say the two countries aren't at the end of a love affair so much as in an unhappy marriage in which both sides, for better or worse, are stuck with each other.

It's tough going, though. The Saudis have little confidence in Obama's commitment to their security and fear he's shifting U.S. attentions to its rival, Iran; Obama has described the Saudis as "so-called allies" and has complained their policies fuel anti-U.S. terror and regional chaos.

On the most kinetic level, the two countries are linked by counterterrorism efforts that will go on for years.

It was reported in 2013 that the U.S. operates an unacknowledged drone base out of Saudi Arabia and is relying on the country to fight al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, the Yemen-based group that the Obama administration has called the most serious threat to the American homeland.

Separately, the U.S. "needs Saudi Arabia to provide Arab cover for the American-led coalition fighting the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria," said David Ottaway, a Wilson Center expert on the kingdom. "The overall U.S. war on terrorism in the Middle East cannot be won without Saudi help." – by Nicole Gaouette, Kevin Liptak, Michelle Kosinski and Nic Robertson

Comment: Long article dealing with a full range of subjects.

20.4.2016 – The Independent (** A P)

Obama knows 9/11 was linked to Saudi Arabia – its massive oil reserves are behind his official visit

Saudi Arabia's million barrel a day output, plus its strategic location in the Middle East, means the West must pay obeisance to the regional head-choppers

Poor old Barack. Off he goes to Riyadh to talk to his so-called ally, Saudi Arabia. The Sunni Wahhabi kingdom long ago run out of patience with the US president, who befriended Shiite Iran and who failed to destroy the Alawite (read: Shiite) regime in Syria. So why is Obama even bothering coming to the Gulf? Does he have any friends left among the kings, emirs and princes of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, the Emirates and Oman?

Obama won’t be entering the Saudi lions’ den. The Saudis were never as brave as lions – which is why they let the decidedly unprincely Osama bin Laden lead the Arab legion in Afghanistan – but the little cubs now trying to run the country are very angry.

The ambitious, ruthless deputy crown prince and defence minister, Mohamed bin Salman, launched the kingdom’s crazed war against the Houthi rebels in Yemen last year, convinced (without evidence) that Iran was arming them. The young Saudi foreign minister Adel al-Jubair – brilliant former Washington ambassador, a man with a silken, dangerously eloquent tongue – has no hesitation in denouncing Western weakness.

And, according to the New York Times, the Saudis have even threatened to sell billions of dollars of their US assets if Congress passes a bill allowing the Saudi government to be held responsible in American courts for the crimes against humanity of 9/11.

And that, indeed, is the foundation of the US-Saudi mess right now. Of the 19 hijackers involved in 9/11, 15 were Saudis, a fact diplomatically ignored in the years immediately following the attacks. The Saudis bankrolled the Taliban for many years.

The Americans believe – rightly – that Isis itself today receives much support from within Saudi Arabia, though they haven’t gone quite so far as to say the government is behind this. Saudi Arabia, in other words, is regarded in Washington as a very dodgy nation to be an ally.

But Obama’s got to pretend to King Salman (the crown prince’s Dad) that the US still stands four-square behind the kingdom’s security and sovereignty – he can hardly say he’s going to support Saudi ‘democracy’ for obvious reasons – and it’s clear that the country’s massive oil reserves, its million barrels a day output, strategic location and control of Sunni Muslim finances, means that the West has got to go on paying obeisance to all the regional head-choppers.

Be sure that when King Salman dies (and may he live for many years), David Cameron will once more lower the Union flag in mourning as he did for his predecessor – by Robert Fisk

Continue at:

Comment: Really a good read hitting the point.

14.4.2016 – Strategic Culture (** B P)

The Implosion of the House of Saud

The Panama Papers psyops revealed that – ailing – King Salman of Saudi Arabia is among a roast of notorious offshore profiteers «in relation» to «associates».

The House of Saud used British Virgin Islands shell companies to take out at least $34 million in mortgages for lavish houses in London and «a luxury yacht the size of a football field». And yet Western corporate media has given it a glaring pass. Quite predictable: House of Saud notables feature heavily among prime Western vassals.

As it stands, a major disconnect is also in effect. The House of Saud is busy spinning the need for austerity at home even as it is now positioned as the world’s third-largest spender on weapons, ahead of Russia.

«Austerity» is a bit rich when I revealed earlier this year that the House of Saud not only unleashed an oil price war – against Russia, Iran and the US shale oil industry – but also was busy unloading at least $1 trillion in US securities on the market to balance its increasingly disastrous budget.

And now we have a major PR offensive in Western corporate media by Warrior Prince Mohammad bin Salman, 30, the lead conductor of the disastrous, illegal and crammed with civilian collateral damage war on Yemen. Young Salman is selling himself as an Arab David Bowie – the Man Who Changed the World, mostly because of his desire to partially privatize Aramco and partially extract Saudi Arabia from its strict role as an oil hacienda by creating a $2 trillion fund.

For the US, UK and France, especially, Saudi Arabia is the proverbial «key ally». It’s not only the – again proverbial – second-largest oil reserves in the world, and the notorious Mob-style 1945 «protection» deal struck between Roosevelt and Ibn Saud. It’s the House of Saud as the key anchor for the petrodollar; and the House of Saud consistently buying over $100 billion in weapons from the West in the past few years.

Yet, in parallel, Saudi Arabia – a mix of theocracy and absolute monarchy, complete with a gaggle of intolerant, fundamentalist imams – keeps perpetuating its role of ideological matrix to all strands of Salafi-Jihadism, including of course its latest incarnation: the phony ISIS/ISIL/Daesh «Caliphate». The House of Saud, directly and indirectly, has lavished over $100 billion all across the lands of Islam – and beyond – to spread its fundamentalist Wahhabi «vision».

For a while there have been incessant rumors, from London to New York, and across the Middle East, of a possible coup in Riyadh.

Now a policy-making source with intimate knowledge not only of the House of Saud but its real masters in the Washington/Wall Street axis has offered an unprecedented glimpse into the current, groundbreaking power play in the Kingdom.

According to the source, «Prince Mohammed bin Salman really does realize what is happening. He is being set up. He is surrounded by consultants going over the entire Saudi economic system aiming for its reorganization – which is certainly necessary. And some of these consultants at the same time are organizing the data for the CIA. This would make any transition away from the monarchy – which the CIA loathes – much easier, towards a favored military officer».

What’s fascinating in this running Saudi House of Cards plot is that, according to our source, «King Abdullah was someone that could be argued to be useful to the United States to maintain the stability of oil supply». But influential Beltway players do not regard Salman or his son that way; especially the son is thought of as «erratic and unstable».

Once again: control, control, control. Our source explains how «the West has educated Saudi Arabia’s military officers – who are often Western intel agents. That’s why Crown Prince Sultan never trusted them and purposely kept the military weak when he was Defense Minister. He feared them as the privileged source in a takeover of the country. And he was certainly correct. In the CIA’s eyes, the Saudis need outside supervision. And this is one of the reasons for the CIA’s desire for regime change, as the place is spiraling out of control».

Yet here’s another key disconnect. The CIA believes the House of Saud to be the chief sponsors of global terrorism. But that’s not true. Most of these terror ops are 21st century remixes of Operation Gladio. And that implies the hand of NATO/Pentagon. This disconnect partially explains why the Pentagon and the CIA are at each other’s throats.

It’s still unclear which US intel faction will eventually prevail in Riyadh – and that may further change depending on who will be the tenant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue next year.

For the moment, quite a few influential players are fond of imagining an astonishing House of Saudi fortune, including Thousand-and-One nights-style assets of the extended royal family, all frozen overseas, from the US to Panama. With the inevitable corollary of thousands of princes lining up for cab driver jobs in London and New York. – by Pepe Escobar

cp2 Allgemein / General

22.4.2016 – ARD (* B K)

Gefangen im Stellvertreterkrieg

Die Menschen im Jemen leiden schwer unter dem Stellvertreterkrieg, den sich Saudi-Arabien und der Iran dort liefern. In der Hauptstadt Sanaa gibt es keinen Strom mehr und kaum Leitungswasser. Dauere der Krieg an, droht das Land zu implodieren – von Thomas Aders, ARD-Studio Kairo, zzt. Sanaa

2 Nutzerkommentare:

Am 22. April 2016 um 02:24 von wadenbeißer

Kein Stellvertreterkrieg

Die schiitischen Huthi haben 2015 fast ganz Jemen erobert.Daraufhin haben die Saudis + Aliirte das Land verbombt .Damit der sunitische Ex-Präsident wieder an die Macht kommt.Bis heute konnten keine Beteiligung des Iran belegt werden.Es ist unglaublich,das die USA und der Westen zulässt, das die Saudis Jemen zerstören.
Liebe TS,bitte keine Mutmaßungen der Kriegbeteilungen des Iran aufführen.

Am 22. April 2016 um 02:53 von pnyx

Der Jemen ist ein weiteres

Der Jemen ist ein weiteres Beispiel für ein Land, das durch eine völlig verfehlte westliche Politik vollends zu Grunde gerichtet wird. Millionen Menschen, die mit dem ganzen Machtgerangel nichts zu schaffen haben, wird buchstäblich ihre sonst schon dürftige Lebensgrundlage entzogen. Profitieren davon tun auch im Jemen die religiös bemäntelten Nihilisten der Kaida und des IS. Die Rationalität hinter diesem Verhalten erschliesst sich wohl nicht nur mir nicht.

21.4.2016 – The Cipher brief (* A K P)

Quagmire in Yemen

It is concern over the Islamic State (also known as ISIS or ISIL) and AQAP expansion that has the U.S. indirectly involved in the war in Yemen. Indeed, Bruce Riedel calls Washington Riyadh’s “silent partner” in the war. The senior fellow at Brookings and former senior advisor on the Middle East and South Asia to the last four U.S. presidents notes that the Obama administration has sold $95 billion in arms to Saudi Arabia.

Just one month after the Saudis began airstrikes in Yemen, the U.S. government added nearly $112 million to its contract with Riyadh’s Al Raha Group for Technical Services in order to provide personnel services in support of the Royal Saudi Air Force (RSAF) F-15 fighter jets. Six months later the U.S. awarded a nearly $263 million contract to Lockheed Martin to “perform sustainment, logistics, and associated management support” of navigation and targeting pod systems for Saudi Arabia’s F-15s. Additional U.S. military support to the Saudis is expected by year’s end.

The Saudis are believed to be using their F-15 fleet in Yemen. A 2016 military capabilities assessment by the International Institute for Strategic Studies reports the Saudis have F-15s, Tornados, and Typhoons for ground attack that they use for missions like those in Yemen.

Nasser Arrabyee, who is based in Sana’a, told The Cipher Brief the Saudis are also using “F-16s, the most advanced American weapons like cluster bombs, ‘Bradley and Abrams’ tanks and armored vehicles.”

The Saudi Arabian embassy in Washington did not comment when asked to confirm they are flying their F-15s and/or F-16s over Yemen.

American logistical support for the RSAF aircraft, intelligence support, and more than $1 billion in munitions for Saudi warplanes are helping strengthen Saudi operations in Yemen. “The U.S. will probably have to continue supplying munitions and logistical assistance if it wants the Saudis to step up their involvement in the U.S.-led coalition against the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq,” said Ottaway.

Even if peace talks begin and the fighting in Yemen dies down, the U.S. is sure to continue – if not increase – logistical and arms contracts with Saudi Arabia. The Obama administration has already supplied at least $47.8 billion in military sales to Saudi Arabia – nearly triple the sales under George W. Bush – according to the Defense Security Cooperation Agency – by Kaitlin Lavinder

21.4.2016 – The Cipher brief (* B K P)

No End to Fighting in Sight

The Cipher Brief: The warring parties in Yemen agreed to a ceasefire at midnight on April 10 ahead of a new round of peace talks that were set to start April 18 in Kuwait. What is the current situation on the ground? Will the ceasefire hold? Why haven’t past ceasefires held?

Nasser Arrabyee: The current situation (as of April 18) is that the fighting continues on all fronts, with Saudi fighter jets flying over the capital Sana’a around the clock and bombing everywhere, killing people asleep in their houses and working on their farms, in factories, schools, hospitals, etc., and obliterating the already weak infrastructure. There has been no change at all since the Saudi bombing campaign started at dawn on March 26, 2015 with shockingly unjustified support of the Obama administration.

No previous truce or ceasefire has held even for minutes, and this alleged ceasefire did not hold even for seconds after the UN declared it on April 10. It's not holding now, and it will not hold at all until there is a complete halt of the U.S.-backed Saudi aggression on Yemen.

Furthermore, I can confidently say, there have been no actual truces or ceasefires at all in the past. This current ceasefire is also a joke and the planned Kuwait negotiations are just a Saudi trick to reduce the pressure from free and independent media and human rights groups who see real war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide crimes being committed against Yemenis almost daily by Saudi war criminals.

So why is this ceasefire not holding and why have the past ceasefires not held? The main, and maybe the only, reason why previous ceasefires and truces failed is the same reason why this one is not holding. It is Saudi Arabia and only Saudi Arabia: The war is between Yemen patriotic forces and Saudi Arabia forces and its "allies" and mercenaries from all over the world. When one of these “ceasefires” or “truces” is declared, Saudi Arabia is the first to say it supports the ceasefire between Yemen’s legitimate government and the Houthis. The Saudi so-called "Yemen government" is a group of Yemeni exiled people languishing in luxurious hotels in Riyadh. They are not in any way the fighters on the ground; they are not even the leaders of these fighters. They are merely “the internationally recognized government.” So, Saudi Arabia is the real one who is fighting in Yemen, with Yemenis defending themselves. When Saudi Arabia wants to stop the war, it can stop it in minutes.

TCB: The peace talks were supposed to begin April 18. What does each side want? How do you expect the talks to progress?

NA: Nothing happened in Kuwait on April 18. The Yemenis (that is the Houthis and their allies) refuse to go until Saudi aggression stops. Nothing will happen until the Saudis stop their aggression on Yemen or the would-be king Mohammed Bin Salman comes to Sana’a and establishes a luxurious palace and rules as a U.S.-backed occupier.

TCB: Will Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi retain power or will there be a new person selected for the presidency?

NA: Hadi will not continue. Hadi failed to be a president during his two-year term and failed again when the UN extended his term an additional year. Then, he resigned, and declared in front of the world that his resignation was final, and he would not change his mind. Then, he escaped, and surrendered himself to the Saudis who use him for obliterating his country. Moreover, Hadi has no popular support in Yemen, neither in the south where he is from, nor in the north. He was elected in one-candidate elections in 2012 as a compromised president. If he had any kind of popularity, say 15 percent, that would be enough to help the Saudis finish its war (given the Saudis advanced weapons, and armies and mercenaries from all over the world). The Saudis want to finish the war as soon as possible to appear as heroes, especially after they told President Barack Obama it would only take five to 10 days at most.

TCB: How has al-Qaeda in Yemen benefitted from the conflict? Have they conquered more territory and increased their influence?

NA: The big winners from the U.S.-backed Saudi aggression on Yemen are al-Qaeda and ISIS. Some of al-Qaeda’s leaders are now in the luxurious hotels of Riyadh, where they are not hiding or escaping arrest as they were before leaving Yemen.

Al-Qaeda’s leaders who remained in Yemen are fighting on at least eleven fronts with Saudi weapons, Saudi F-16s, and Saudi money. Khaled Ba Tarfi, a top leader of al-Qaeda, confirmed in his first speech after they took over the Republican Palace of Mukalla in April 2015 that they are fighting against the Houthis, backed by former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh, on eleven fronts, including Taiz and Mareb (the main fronts of the Saudi forces until now).

The leaders who fled to Riyadh probably keep reassuring Saudi officials that there will be no problem at all if al-Qaeda takes all the provinces of Yemen from the Shiite Houthis because we are all Sunnis. The cleric Abdul Majid al-Zandani is one these leaders in Riyadh now collecting money from the Saudi government and Saudi charities who have been eager to help him. Al-Zandani is designated by the U.S. and UN as a global terrorist. Al-Zandani kept fighting in Taiz for months before he disguised himself and escaped to Saudi Arabia in the middle of 2015.

The second famous example of al-Qaeda leaders now in Riyadh is Abdul Wahab al-Humaikani, a graduate from the al-Zandani religious university, Al Eman university (closed now in Sana’a and all of Yemen). Humaikani is the top leader of the recently established "political" party of Al Rashad. He was designated by the U.S. Treasury Department a global al-Qaeda financier, raising funds from Qatar and other gulf countries for al-Qaeda terrorist operations. The interesting story about this man is that Saudi Arabia sent him to Geneva to represent what it called Yemen’s legitimate government, and he went and shook hands with the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon.

So, because of these two leaders and many others, al-Qaeda and ISIS have been expanding everywhere in Yemen.

TCB: Could resolving the conflict in Yemen calm tensions between Saudi Arabia and Iran?

NA: Saudi tension with Iran will never calm down by resolving the Yemeni conflict. Saudi aggression in Yemen was not because of Iran’s increasing influence in Yemen, as the Saudis say. Iran will never ever come to Yemen and would not be accepted even if it tried to. Saudi Arabian influence in Yemen is the biggest of all. There can be no comparison between Saudi Arabia and Iran in terms of influence. Saudi Arabia is closer, wealthier, and has the same language, traditions, and customs as Yemen.

Saudi Arabia attacked Yemen and is now obliterating it only to scare Iran, especially after the Iranian nuclear deal with the six major powers. And Obama is still waiting for the end of the 10-day long war that he approved to appease the angry ally of the oil money. Another reason for Saudi aggression is to promote King Mohammed Bin Salman, who needs to show power internally more than externally.

TCB: How do people in Yemen view the U.S.? Do they think the U.S. is a major player in the conflict on the side of the Saudis?

NA: The majority of Yemenis view America as the killer of Yemenis. Everybody knows that this devastating and unjustifiable war was declared from Washington, and all its support is from Obama, who needed to appease and placate Saudi Arabia, the big ally of oil money, without paying attention to the fact that he is destroying the sublime values of America—values of justice, freedom, human rights, and democracy. Huge posters in the main streets of the capital Sana’a read, "America Kills Yemeni People."

The only glimmer of hope that things may return to normal between Yemen and America comes from the actions and words of the brave and free people of America who publicly condemn the Saudi aggression on Yemen—the senators, the human rights activists, and the writers who encourage Yemenis to not lose hope in the American values that attract the admiration of many Yemenis who struggle to follow suit – Questions to Nasser Arrabyee, journalist from Sanaa

Comment: A very pessimist view of the Kuwait peace talks which I just hope will not come true.

21.4.2016 – Almanar (A K P)

Ansarullah: We Don’t Trust Our Enemy, We Have Right of Retaliation

Yemen’s Ansarullah revolutionary movement stressed it has the right of retaliation in face of the continuous ceasefire violations carried out by Saudi-led coalition.

“We don’t trust our enemies and we have the right to take the appropriate position if the pledges by the other side were not met,” Ansarullah spokesman, Mohammad Abdelsalam said in remarks on Wednesday.

“We call on our army and popular committees to be cautious and to respond as long as the Saudi-US aggression on Yemen continues,” Ansarullah spokesman said before leaving the Yemeni capital for the UN-brokered peace talks in the Kuwaiti capital.

20.4.2016 – ABC (B K P)

Radio: Yemen: the war we forgot

The war in Yemen receives little coverage - but it is shaping up as a legal, moral and political minefield. There are questions about the UK and US's supply of arms without any restraints to the Saudi-led coalition now attacking the region's poorest country. There are worries about the indiscriminate bombing of civilian targets. And the only winners in the conflict are al-Qaeda who have captured territory, helped themselves to money from the country's banks and are so far winning the battle for hearts and minds. Guest: Elisabeth Kendall, senior research fellow, Pembroke College, Oxford

26.3.2016 – Press TV Iran (A K P)

Simple Question - More US militants to help Saudi Arabia’s massacre in Yemen

Mercenaries from private US military firm DynCorp recently arrived in the Yemeni city of Aden to replace paid militants from another US company, where UAE forces are fighting against Yemen.

[not checked, no vote]

20.4.2015 – New York Times (* B K)

Vivid Accounts of War’s Horror Stream From Yemen’s Capital

Residents of Yemen’s capital, Sana, shared vivid accounts of life during wartime on social networks on Monday, as a huge blast shattered windows and shook buildings miles from the site of an attack in the Faj Attan district of the city.

Dozens of people were feared dead after the airstrike by a Saudi-led military coalition set off a huge explosion that flattened homes in the neighborhood, witnesses said.

Strikingly clear images of the blast were captured in a video clip widely shared from phone to phone using the WhatsApp messaging service. The latter portion of that clip also gave a sense of the powerful shock wave that shattered glass around the capital.

Comment: One year ago now – who in the Western world really cared? Zhus, the next year of war could happen.

cp3 Humanitäre Lage / Humanitarian situation

23.4.2016 – Doctors Without Borders (* A H)

Running for MSF

Running for Médecins Sans Frontières (UK) because they are our heroes!

Yemen is under siege. Today, civilians are suffering in the fighting tearing Yemen apart, with casualties now topping 35,000. Twenty of Yemen’s 22 governorates are precariously poised on the verge of devastating famine.
Because of a blockade imposed by Saudi Arabia, no electricity since the war began and constant bombardment by both sides to the conflict, hospitals in Yemen have been forced to close down.
However, the MSF team have continued their incredible work and continue to practice medicine under fire all over the world. The MSF team are truly hero's not only in Yemen but all over the world.
And while our pleas to end this conflict (and others) have fallen on deaf ears, one way we can really play a part in relieving the suffering of the people is by supporting MSF.
So, our team of awesomeness will be joining the MSF team in their run to fundraise..
You can either join us and sign up for the run or support us by digging hard into your pockets and donating to MSF through this link.
Thank you in advance and be generous - its for a good cause

21.4.2016 – UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (B H)

Yemen Humanitarian Pooled Fund: Strategy Paper - 2016 First Standard Allocation

The Humanitarian Pooled Fund (HPF) for Yemen was established early 2015 under the leadership of the Humanitarian Coordinator (HC). The objectives of the Yemen HPF are to promote needs-based assistance in accordance with humanitarian principles, respond to the most urgent needs, strengthen cluster coordination system and reinforce the leadership of the HC.

This allocation strategy paper is the result of consultations with stakeholders from March 2016 onwards; including national and international NGOs, UN agencies, the Inter-Cluster Coordination Mechanism (ICCM) and the Humanitarian Country Team (HCT). The HPF Advisory Board (AB) provided feedback on the strategy paper at a meeting on 18th April, before the final endorsement by the HC. and in full:

cp4 Kulturerbe / Cultural heritage

22.4.2016 – National Yemen (A )

Yemeni Heritage Week – Museums United for Yemen

UNESCO in cooperation with 10 leading museums around the world organises an international awareness-raising campaign “Yemeni Heritage Week – Museums United for Yemen” from 24 to 30 April 2016.
UNESCO and 10 leading museums around the world come together to raise international awareness on the great richness of Yemen’s culture and history.

All the participating museums – The Ashmolean Museum, The British Museum, Freer|Sackler, Smithsonian, Louvre Museum, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Museo Nazionale d’Arte Orientale “Guiseppe Tucci”, Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera), Russian Academy of Sciences, The State Hermitage Museum, The State Museum of Oriental Art, The Walters Art Museum – will organise temporary exhibitions and highlights of Yemeni collections at their respective museums. These exhibitions will provide general public with a great opportunity to explore and understand cultural heritage of Yemen, which is not always well-known in the world.

The Yemeni Heritage Week – Museums United for Yemen will be organised by the UNESCO Office in Doha from 24 to 30 April 2016 under UNESCO’s global campaign of #Unite4Heritage – by Fakhri Al-Arashi

cp5 Nordjemen und Huthis / Northern Yemen and Houthis

21.4.2016 – Reuters (A P)

Turkey freezes assets of Yemeni ex-president Saleh

urkey has frozen the assets of former Yemeni president Ali Abdullah Saleh, in line with a decision by the U.N. Security Council, the government said in its Official Gazette Thursday.

All of Saleh's assets in Turkish banks and other financial institutions were frozen, it said. It did not say how much money Saleh was believed to hold in Turkey.

U.N.-appointed investigators have told the Security Council they suspect Saleh of amassing as much as $60 billion, equivalent to Yemen's annual GDP, during his long rule, and colluding in a takeover by the Houthi militia in 2014.

Most of this wealth was believed to have been transferred abroad under false names or the names of others holding the assets on his behalf, the investigators have said.

The assets were in the form of property, cash, shares, gold and other valuable commodities, and were believed to spread across at least 20 countries.

cp7 UNO und Friedensgespräche / UN and peace talks

22.4.2016 – Deutschlandfunk (A K P)

Friedensverhandlungen in Kuwait werden fortgesetzt

Die in Kuwait stattfindenden Friedensgespräche zum Jemen sollen fortgesetzt werden.

Der UNO-Sondergesandte Scheich Ahmed erklärte, beide Konfliktparteien strebten ein Ende der Kämpfe an. Doch gebe es noch viele ungeklärte Fragen. Man werde aber auf eine Einigung zwischen beiden Seiten hinarbeiten. Ziel sei in erster Linie die Umsetzung einer umfassenden Waffenruhe im Jemen.

22.4.2016 – Die Welt (A K P)

Friedensgespräche für Jemen gehen weiter

Am zweiten Tag der Friedensgespräche für Jemen hat Saudi-Arabien am Freitag zunehmend weniger Verletzungen der am 11. April vereinbarten Waffenruhe festgestellt. Der Sprecher der von Riad angeführten Militärkoalition, General Ahmed Assiri, sagte der Nachrichtenagentur AFP, diese Information stamme "von unseren Beobachtungen vor Ort". Die gemeinsamen Ausschüsse aus Regierungskräften und Huthi-Rebellen seien "größtenteils einsatzbereit". Dagegen warfen die Rebellen der saudiarabischen Armee und den Kräften des jemenitischen Präsidenten Abd Rabbo Mansur Hadi erneut mehrfache Verletzungen der Waffenruhe seit Donnerstag vor.

22.4.2016 – Reuters (* A K P)

U.N. says Yemen peace talks atmosphere shows progress

Yemen's warring factions held their first direct talks in a U.N.-backed peace process on Friday and will meet again despite failing to agree on an agenda, participants said.

The United Nations envoy, Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed, said the meetings in Kuwait had been constructive and the positive atmosphere was a step forward in efforts to end the conflict.

"The meetings held today were constructive and the atmosphere is an important advancement," Ould Cheikh Ahmed told a news conference. "We will intensify our efforts."

But sources present at the talks, delayed since Monday due to the late arrival of the Houthi delegation and its allies, said the two sides continue to be divided on the priorities.

The government delegation wants Houthis and fighters loyal to former president Ali Abdullah Saleh to withdraw from cities and hand over weapons before discussing a political solution, the sources said.

The Houthis and its allies want the formation of a new government representing all parties, which will then oversee disarmament. They also want to focus the discussion on security arrangements and detainees, the sources added.

22.4.2016 – Al Araby (* A K P)

Gloves are off as Yemen's warring factions begin talks

After a four day delay, the Yemeni government has started negotiations in Kuwait with Houthi rebels, in a make-or-break moment for peace in the war-torn state.

Kuwait's Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah al-Khaled al-Sabah opened the meeting and said the talks represent "a historic opportunity" to end the bloodshed in Yemen.

The opening session was preceded by a closed meeting between both parties who discussed the need to implement the ceasefire among other topics, Mohammed Basha, former spokesman for the Yemen Embassy in Washington, said on his Twitter account.

But members of the Houthi delegation - who were also joined by officials from the former President Ali Abdullah Saleh's group who are allied to the Zaydi-Shia militia - said they didn't come to Kuwait "to surrender their arms to their adversaries".
The Houthi delegation also criticised Ould Cheikh for what they perceived as a pro-government "partisan" approach to the negotiations.

The government delegation responded and complained about the "frustrations" of waiting four days for the arrival of the other camp.
Houthi officials only agreed to fly out to Kuwait after receiving assurances that pro-government forces will abide by the terms of the ceasefire in Yemen.

22.4.2016 – Hussain Albukhaiti (A P)

#Yemen delgs criticise #UN envoy -Evasion of implementin ceasefire -Adoption of othr party allegations Delgs insist NO talks till full truce

22.4.2016 – Jamila Hanan (A P)

I'm guessing much of #Saudi #Yemen peace negotiations will be about trying to secure immunity from war crime prosecutions.

22.4.2016 – Xinhua (* A P)

News Analysis: Kuwait talks raise hope for peace in war-torn Yemen

Observers argued that chances of peace are now more than ever before after all sides have failed to achieve goals through military escalation.

Fuad Alsalahi, a political sociology professor at Sanaa University, said the Kuwait talks are very crucial for both Yemen and Saudi Arabia amid obvious military and political failures.

"For Yemen, the country has become on the brink of a complete failure. For Saudi Arabia, there are no more options to win through the military action," Alsalahi said.

"Saudi Arabia has failed to contain the situation in Yemen. In other words, Saudi Arabia is playing too big a role. Thus, it is forced, for regional and political reasons, to back the dialog between Yemenis," he said.

Abubakar Abdullah, head of the future media foundation, said the situation now is different for Saudi Arabia which has continued to use its financial and diplomatic influence to affect the peace process. The international community is now seeking an end to the Saudi aggression which only resulted in a humanitarian catastrophe and other serious consequences including expansion of Al-Qaida and Islamic State (IS) group, he said.

"Based on that, I think the Kuwait talks will be productive and lay the groundwork for a solution to the Yemeni crisis and war," he said.

"In addition, the talks agenda this time, according to revelations of the national groups Ansarullah and the General People's Congress, indicate that obstacles that Riyadh used to put before the peace process no longer exist. And that's a sign Yemenis will go ahead to a peaceful solution," added Abdullah.

Ahmed Al-Jabr, political analyst, said "no one can ignore foreign meddling as the Yemeni factions are obvious proxies for regional powers. Therefore, only understanding and talks between regional players can guarantee a real peace process in the country".

Professor Alsalahi also said that the UN should exercise more pressure on the Yemeni factions to reach a political deal.

"The UN needs to play its role effectively as we all know that if there is not a political solution now, Yemen will sink in a long civil war," he added – by Fuad Rajeh

21.4.2016 – Deutsche Welle (* A P)

Jemen: "Krieg in Frieden verwandeln"

Die dritte Verhandlungsrunde drohte zu scheitern, bevor sie begonnen hatte. Dann kamen die Vertreter der Huthis doch noch an den Verhandlungstisch. Die Hoffnungen auf Frieden sind groß - die Erfolgsaussichten begrenzt.

Der UN-Sondergesandte Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed eröffnete die Verhandlungen. Mit dreitägiger Verspätung haben die Friedensgespräche für das Bürgerkriegsland Jemen begonnen.

Die Verhandlungen fänden auf der Grundlage einer Resolution des UN-Sicherheitsrates statt, erklärte Cheikh Ahmed. In dieser werden die schiitischen Huthi-Rebellen aufgerufen, sich aus den Gebieten zurückzuziehen, die sie seit 2014 erobert haben und alle schweren und mittleren Waffen der jemenitischen Regierung zu übergeben. Im Fokus der Gespräche stünde außerdem die Bildung einer Regierung, die beide Konfliktparteien mit einbezieht sowie die Wiederherstellung der Staatsgewalt, die aktuell zwischen den Huthis und der Regierung des im Exil befindlichen Präsidenten Abd Rabbo Mansur Hadi aufgeteilt ist.

Zu Beginn der Gespräche äußerten sich die meisten Akteure in Kuwait positiv.

Kommentar: Knackpunkt wird wieder einmal sein, dass die UN Resolution 2216 – wie hier auch klar gesagt – zur Grundlage der Gespräche gemacht wird. Diese vom Westen initiierte Resolution hat jetzt schon seit einem Jahr alle Friedensansätze blockiert, da sie allein die Huthis als Problem sieht und an sie weitreichende Forderungen stellt, die einer völligen Kapitulation gleichkommen. Die Resolution war bislang eine Steilvorlage vor allem für „Präsident“ Hadi, um ständig Maximalforderungen zu stellen, ja, um die Vorab-Kapitulation der Huthis sogar zur Voraussetzung für Waffenstillstand und Friedensgepräche zu erklären. Mit dieser Resolution kann er die Gespräche beliebig blockiere. Um die Gefahr der Selbstvernichtung könnten sich die Huthis darauf nie einlassen. Von der Gegenseite fordert diese Resolution dagegen überhaupt nichts, die saudischen Luftangriffe nimmt sie billigend zur Kenntnis. Solange nicht auf einer ausgewogeneren Grundlage verhandelt wird, wird es keine Erfolgschance für solche Verhandlungen geben.

21.4.2016 – AFP (A P)

Hard-won Yemen peace talks open with call for compromise

Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah al-Khaled Al-Sabah of host country Kuwait opened the meeting by hailing the talks as "a historic opportunity" to end the bloodshed.

"War will only lead to more devastation, losses and displacement of people," he said.

UN special envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed appealed to the warring parties to work to reach a comprehensive and durable accord.

"Today, you have one of two options; a secure nation that guarantees an honourable life or the ruins of a nation," he said.

Ould Cheikh Ahmed called for "compromise" solutions and stressed Yemen was "closer to peace than any time before".

The first session ended after less than two hours of talks and the next round would be held on Friday afternoon, a delegate told AFP.

21.4.2016 – Atlantic Council (* A P)

Keeping the Possibility of Peace in Yemen Alive

The talks at the GCC summit this week provide an opportunity for President Barack Obama to address the war and humanitarian crisis in Yemen.

Washington insists that it is providing intelligence to Saudi Arabia to reduce civilian casualties, but US munitions have been used repeatedly in the aerial bombing of schools, hospitals, markets, weddings, and other civilian sites.

The April 11 ceasefire was violated on both sides, so often, in fact, that Yemenivoices on social media mocked reports that it was tenuously holding.

Most significantly, the Southern Movement, or Hirak, comprised of hundreds of smaller groups, is not at the table. Tens of thousands of southerners turned out for demonstrations in Aden on Sunday and Monday, waving pre-unification flags and demanding self-determination. Likenesses of northerner and newly appointed Vice President General Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar were burned and defaced,

Representatives of the Islamist Islah group are also not represented at the talks. They have been fighting in support of the Saudi-led coalition in the south and especially Taiz. The Hirak and Islah are both currently allied with the Saudi coalition, but they share little in common other than opposition to the Houthis and Saleh. Numerous armed tribes, some temporarily aligned the northern alliance and others with the Saudi-led coalition, are also not included in the talks. The current talks are an essential start, but a more inclusive peace process, one that can see Yemen through a transition to a stable future in which all interests are considered—will require that a wider representation of interests inside of Yemen.

Still, the possibility for peace is still alive, and Obama has many reasons to push for it. Primary among them is the need to get the United States and Saudi Arabia out of this war. Despite Washington’s claims that it is only aiding the Saudi coalition, on a practical level the United States is a directly engaged: it is selling munitions to Saudi Arabia that it knows will be deployed in Yemen; it is providing intelligence to the Saudi coalition; and it has carried out more than 700 mid-airrefueling missions for Saudi-coalition planes actively bombing sites inside of Yemen. Legalistic arguments that the United States is not “at war” with Yemen obscure the common sense that it is more engaged than some other members of the Saudi-led coalition. – by Jillian Schwedler

21.4.2016 – Oxfam (A P)

Oxfam reaction to President Obama’s Visit to Riyadh

“The president’s trip to Saudi Arabia this week comes at a crucial moment for Yemen. It is clear from the posturing that has taken place leading up to the negotiations scheduled this week in Kuwait – as well as in past rounds of negotiations – that parties to the conflict are still more concerned about gaining a tactical advantage than a permanent ceasefire. For the 21.2 million out of Yemen’s 25 million people in urgent need of humanitarian assistance, peace cannot come soon enough,” said Scott Paul, Senior Humanitarian Policy Advisor at Oxfam America.

“Ending the war will require the resolve of all parties to the conflict. The United States cannot credibly be a peace broker and an arms broker at the same time. If a settlement is agreed in Kuwait, President Obama should announce his strong support for the resumption of Yemen’s political transition and the rebuilding of its infrastructure and economy. Otherwise, he should make clear that the US’s open-ended support for the coalition will not continue.”

21.4.2016 – SRF (A P)

«Jemen kann nicht wieder ein Zentralstaat werden»

Nötig sei eine föderalistische Lösung, sagt SRF-Auslandredaktor Fredy Gsteiger. Pläne dafür gibt es seit Jahren.

Nötig wären eine breit abgestützte Übergangsregierung, eine neue Verfassung und später auch Wahlen – alles Dinge, die eigentlich schon vor Jahren vorbereitet worden waren. Pläne dafür liegen in der Schublade. Wichtig ist vor allem aber eines: Jemen kann nicht wieder ein Zentralstaat werden, in dem alles von der Hauptstadt Sanaa aus gesteuert wird. Es braucht eine föderalistische Lösung, Minderheitsrechte müssen eingeführt und Rücksicht auf die sehr unterschiedlichen Befindlichkeiten in dem sehr heterogenen Land genommen werden.

Eine solche Lösung bräuchte viel gegenseitiges Entgegenkommen. Ist auf allen Seiten echte Bereitschaft spürbar?

Das ist die grosse Frage, die sich in den nächsten Tagen klären muss. Beobachter sagen, die Chancen stünden etwas besser. Das Problem ist aber, dass es im Land starke Kräfte gibt, die keine Einigung wollen: die Dschihadisten, das heisst Al-Kaida und der sogenannte «Islamische Staat» (IS). Sie profitieren davon, dass Jemen heute ein gescheiterter Staat ist.

Wäre eine Aufteilung des Landes nicht die bessere Option?

Es gibt viele Anhänger dieser Idee, vor allem liberale Kreise im Süden des Landes, in der Hafenstadt Aden. Sie möchten nicht wieder von Sanaa aus regiert werden. Es gibt aber auch starke Anhänger der Gegenthese, so zum Beispiel die Friedensnobelpreisträgerin Tawakkol Karman. Sie findet, es sei wichtig, dass der Jemen zusammenbleibe. Vor allem, weil eine Teilung viele Probleme, wie zum Beispiel den Islamismus, die extreme Armut und die ungleiche Verteilung des Reichtums – das Öl liegt im Süden –, auch nicht lösen würde.

21.4.2016 – Der Standard (A K P)

Jemen-Gespräche doch noch begonnen

Bevor sie noch begonnen hatten, drohten am Donnerstag die von der Uno-vermittelten Jemen-Gespräche in Kuwait schon wieder zu scheitern. Ursprünglich war der Beginn für Montag angesetzt, er wurde schrittweise verschoben. Bevor am Donnerstag die Delegation der Huthi-Rebellen aus dem Oman kommend doch noch am Verhandlungsort eintraf, hatten die Vertreter der Regierung von Präsident Abd Rabbo Mansur Hadi bereits mit der Abreise gedroht. Die beiden Seiten beschuldigen einander des Bruchs der seit Anfang April geltenden Waffenruhe, die nie richtig gegriffen hat

21.4.2016 – ABC News (A K P)

Yemen Peace Talks Begin in Kuwait After Shiite Rebels Arrive

U.N.-backed peace talks between Yemen's warring sides began in Kuwait on Thursday evening in an effort to end the impoverished country's year-long conflict that has killed nearly 9,000 people — a third of them civilians, according to the United Nations.

The talks were originally slated to begin Monday but were delayed because of an earlier boycott by the Yemeni Shiite rebels known as Houthis and their allies.

There have been previous attempts at peace talks. This round in Kuwait is aimed at finding ways to resolve the conflict between Yemen's internationally recognized government, which is backed by a Saudi-led military coalition, and the Houthis and their allies, which include forces loyal to former longtime Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh.

Just a day before the talks kicked off, the Houthis warned they could suspend their participation if there are continued violations of a cease-fire in place since April 10. Both sides of the fighting have violated the fragile cease-fire.

A total of 14 delegates from each side are reportedly taking part in the negotiations, which are being mediated by U.N. envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed.

The envoy opened the talks in Kuwait, urging both sides to have "good intentions" and "make concessions". He told the delegates, seated at a large round table, that only they can bring stability back to Yemen and that they needed to "turn the page" for the country's future.

Comment: Propaganda speech: The Houthis are neither “Shiite” nor “rebels”.

21.4.2016 – AFP (A K P)

Yemen rebels arrive in Kuwait for delayed peace talks

UN-brokered peace talks on Yemen's war were set to finally set to kick off Thursday as a rebel delegation arrived at the crucial negotiations in Kuwait after three days of delay.

The talks were originally supposed to start on Monday but were delayed after the rebels failed to show up in protest against what they described as Saudi violations of a ceasefire, in effect since April 11.

"They (the rebel delegation) have arrived in Kuwait just a few minutes ago," Charbel Raji, spokesman for UN envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed, told AFP.

Insurgents have sent representatives from the Shiite Huthi group and members of former president Ali Abdullah Saleh's General People's Congress party.

A member of the Yemeni government delegation confirmed that the talks were to open at 1600 GMT.

President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi had sent a message to UN envoy Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed demanding the "negotiations open on Thursday evening" and rejecting "rebel conditions to modify the agenda agreed on," according to a member of the government delegation.

Hadi's people arrived in Kuwait at the weekend and threatened to pull out if meetings did not begin on Thursday.

Mahdi al-Mashat, a representative of rebel leader Abdulmalik al-Huthi, said Wednesday that the rebels had been assured that the agenda for the talks would be "clear and tackle issues that could help achieve peaceful solutions".

Writing on Facebook, Mashat warned however that "we will have the right to suspend our participation" if the assurances are not met.

Diplomats say that rebels are demanding an end of the Arab coalition operations and a naval blockade on Yemen that began more than 13 months ago.

They also want UN sanctions against some of their leaders, including Saleh, to be lifted.

Comment: What does Hadi think the “agenda agreed on” would be??

21.4.2016 – The National UAE (A K P)

Start of Yemen peace talks pushed back again, say diplomats

Peace talks between Yemen’s warring factions are on hold pending the arrival of rebel representatives to the UN-backed negotiations, diplomats said on Thursday.

The talks were initially scheduled to start on Monday, and any further delay could dash hopes of ending Yemen’s war after the government delegation threatened to pull out if meetings did not begin immediately.

“According to the latest information, the rebel delegation should arrive in Kuwait by the end of the day," said one diplomat close to the talks.

“As a result, the talks could be delayed further until Friday," another diplomat said.

On Wednesday, UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said negotiations would begin in Kuwait on Thursday.

The rebels only agreed to join the talks after they said they received assurances from the United Nations that pro-government forces would respect a ceasefire which has been violated by warring parties since it came into effect on April 11.

There was still no word on Thursday from the rebels on their expected time of arrival.

Representatives of the Iran-backed Houthi insurgents and their allies left Sanaa on Wednesday for Oman and they are expected to continue on to Kuwait.

But they were still in Oman on Thursday morning, according to diplomats.

In Yemen itself, fighting continued on several fronts, military sources said, as each side blamed the other for truce breaches.

21.4.2016 – Al Araby (A K P)

Houthi delegation en route to Kuwait for peace talks

A plane loaded with Houthi officials and their allies has taken off from the Omani capital for Kuwait, where Yemen's shaky peace talks are due to be held.
The talks were on the brink of collapse due to the absence of the rebels but were pushed back yet again after guarantees were made that the Houthi delegation would arrive on Thursday.
The internationally-recognised government gave Thursday as a deadline for the rebels to arrive in Kuwait or its diplomats would walk out of talks.
Four days after negotiations were scheduled to begin, Yemen's warring factions have yet to meet in Kuwait but a member of the delegation posted an image allegedly showing the group on board a plane in Muscat on Thursday afternoon.
Yasser Aalawadi, a representative of the rebel-allied General People's Congress party - previously led by former President Ali Abdullah Saleh - confirmed his delegation will travel to Kuwait on Thursday.

UN Information Center Sanaa

[UN statements on Yemen in chronological order]

21.4.2016 – AFP (A K P)

Friedensgespräche zum Konflikt im Jemen verzögern sich erneut

Die für Donnerstag geplanten von der UNO vermittelten Friedensgespräche zum Konflikt im Jemen verzögern sich weiter. Bis zum frühen Donnerstagnachmittag (Ortszeit) traf noch kein Vertreter der Aufständischen am Verhandlungsort in Kuwait-Stadt ein, während sich die Regierungsdelegation seit Sonntag dort aufhielt. Diplomaten rechneten nun damit, dass die Gespräche über eine Beilegung der Krise erst am Freitag starten könnten.

21.4.2016 – Living in Yemen on the Edge (A K P)

Yemen peace talks in Kuwait still on hold.

Ceasefire signed last night in Al Dhale & Shabwah. But despite UN promises to enforce the ceasefire fully in Yemen, fighting still goes on in Marib, Al Jowf, Taiz and Sanaa. Saudi jets still screaming over Yemen.

So for now, the Houthi & Saleh delegates remain in Muscat, Oman.

20.4.2016 – Living in Yemen on the Edge (A K P)

Confirmed: 47 Houthis and 49 AlQaeda members released in a prisoner swap in Albaidha today

Comment: Al Qaeda, for sure?

cp8 Saudi-Arabien / Saudi Arabia

22.4.2016 – The Independent (* A P)

Saudi Arabia may be in for a nasty shock when Obama steps down

The mood in the US is changing as politicians and the media explore Saudi links to 9/11 terror attacks

It is hardly a secret that real authority is shifting to Crown Prince Muhammad bin Nayef and his son, Deputy Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman. But the power vacuum does help explain the bizarre and self-destructive nature of present-day Saudi foreign policy that suddenly shifted from cautious use of Saudi Arabia’s vast oil wealth to further its aims, while always keeping its options open, to a militarised and confrontational pursuit of foreign policy objectives.

It is not exactly that the Saudi's priorities have changed, but that the means being used to achieve them are far riskier than in the past. Since King Salman succeeded to the throne, Saudi Arabia has escalated its involvement in the war in Syria and engaged directly in an air war in Yemen. Both ventures have failed: greater support for armed opposition to President Bashar al-Assad in Syria early last year allowed the rebels to advance, but also provoked direct Russian military intervention, making Assad very difficult to displace. Bombing Yemen has not forced the Houthi opposition out of the capital Sanaa and, where the Houthis have retreated, there is chaos which al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula has used to set up their own mini-state on the south coast of Yemen.

The Saudi leaders are more or less openly saying that they are waiting for the departure of President Obama from the White House to resume their status of most favoured ally of the US.

But the Saudis are making a mistake in imagining that hostility to them will dissipate once Mr Obama leaves office. There is renewed pressure for the release of the unpublished 28 pages in the official Congressional 9/11 report on possible Saudi official complicity in the attacks.

In reality, the missing 28 pages in the 9/11 report on possible high level Saudi involvement may not be as categorical or as damaging to the Kingdom as the fact of their continued non-publication. – by Patrick Cockburn

22.4.2016 – Code Pink (** A P)


In the wake of mass executions in Saudi Arabia last month, international press and human rights organizations are bringing attention to the cases of three youth activists sentenced to death, two slated to die by beheading and crucifixion. All are members of the Shia minority who participated in peaceful protests demanding human rights for all Saudis.

Following his peaceful participation in protests during the Arab Spring, Ali Mohammed Al-Nimr was arrested on February 14, 2012, at age 17, after being intentionally run over by a police car. On May 27, 2014, he was sentenced to death by beheading and crucifixion.

Dawood Hussain Almarhoon was first arrested on May 2012, at age 17, for protesting the government, but was released on the same day. When he did not cooperate with officials who wanted him to spy on other activists, he was re-arrested on May 23 and later sentenced to death on October 27, 2014.

Abdullah Al-Zaher was arrested at age 15 in March of 2013, after being shot at by Saudi security forces. During apprehension, he was violently attacked until he fell to the ground bleeding. He was then forced to sign a paper without reading it or consulting with his family during his interrogation. Al-Zaher was sentenced to death by beheading and crucifixion in September 2015.

It is unconscionable that – even in the face of such a universally abhorrent action as condemning juveniles to death – the United States government still refuses to impose legally mandated sanctions against the Saudi government for their persecution of religious minorities.

Join us in calling on the leading Presidential candidates to commit to imposing sanctions against the Saudi government for their human rights abuses and to re-examine the toxic U.S.-Saudi relationship once they are in office!

We, the undersigned, call on candidates for President of the United States to pledge to re-examine the toxic U.S.-Saudi relationship once in office and to immediately impose sanctions against the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia due to their systematic, ongoing and egregious violations of religious freedoms. These sanctions are long overdue and mandated by law, yet year after year, the State Department has granted a waiver to Saudi Arabia despite the horrifying human rights abuses perpetrated by the Saudi government. In the wake of the recent beheadings of 47 people, and the imposition of death sentences against 3 Shia youth, the U.S. government can no longer give Saudi Arabia a free pass for religious persecution.

21.4.2016 – Craig Murray (B K P)

UK Killing Civilians for Oil Again in the King Salman Canal Project

Yemen of course has very little oil of its own. But where the West gets involved in conflict, it is almost always at base either about oil resources (eg Kuwait, Libya, Syria, Iraq) or oil routes (eg Afghanistan, Georgia, Balkans). It turns out that Britain’s unflinching military support of Saudi Arabian aggression in Yemen is about oil routes.

Last year the Saudis announced a plan to drive a ship canal through Saudi desert, Oman and Yemen to the Gulf of Aden, bypassing the straits of Hormuz. This would reduce ship journeys by approximately 500 miles, and limit any potential physical threat to shipping from Iran. It is worth noting that Iran has stated it will not block the strait of Hormuz, and is a signatory to the UN Law of the Sea Convention which would make that illegal. Iranian control of the strait of Hormuz has long been the nightmare of the American right.

The canal project is moving forward in the Saudi governmental system and has now formally been assigned to the Ministry of Electricity, after an internal royal family wrangle as control of the mega project will obviously bring massive opportunities for self enrichment. It is now to be associated with the construction of nuclear power plants, which it is difficult to believe are unrelated to Saudi desire for nuclear weapons. It is to be called the King Salman canal.

Oman would probably welcome the canal, but Yemen is much more problematic. There would need to be a Yemeni government not only willing to agree, but both able and willing to enforce security on the canal. And given that the eastern Yemeni regions through which it would pass are predominantly Shia, this is a major problem for the Saudis. A problem that could only be resolved by taking effective military control of Yemen.

The United Kingdom is supporting yet another war for oil. But don’t worry about it, the corporate media is full of the Queen’s birthday! Stop thinking and shout hurrah! – by Craig Murray

20.4.2016 – New York Times (* A P)

Obama in Saudi Arabia, Exporter of Oil and Bigotry

There truly are dangerous strains of intolerance and extremism within the Islamic world — and for many of these, Saudi Arabia is the source.

I’m glad that President Obama is visiting Saudi Arabia, for engagement usually works better than isolation. But let’s not let diplomatic niceties keep us from pointing to the insidious role that Saudi Arabia plays in sowing instability, and, for that matter, in tarnishing the image of Islam worldwide. The truth is that Saudi leaders do far more to damage Islam than Trump or Cruz can do, and we should be as ready to denounce their bigotry as Trump’s.

Americans are abuzz about the “missing 28 pages” — unsupported leads suggesting that Saudi officials might have had a hand in the 9/11 attacks. But as far as I can tell, these tips, addressed in a still-secret section of a congressional report, were investigated and discredited; Philip Zelikow of the 9/11 Commission tells me the 28 pages are “misleading”; the commission found there was “no evidence” of the Saudi government or senior officials financing the plot.

The much better reason to be concerned with Saudi Arabia is that it has promoted extremism, hatred, misogyny and the Sunni/Shiite divide that is now playing out in a Middle East civil war. Saudi Arabia should be renamed the Kingdom of Backwardness.

As the land where Islam began, Saudi Arabia has enormous influence among Muslims worldwide. Its approach to Islam has special legitimacy, its clerics have great reach, its media spread its views worldwide and it finances madrasas in poor countries to sow hatred.

From Pakistan to Mali, these Saudi-financed madrasas have popped up and cultivate religious extremism — and, sometimes, terrorists.

To be blunt, Saudi Arabia legitimizes Islamic extremism and intolerance around the world. If you want to stop bombings in Brussels or San Bernardino, then turn off the spigots of incitement from Saudi Arabia and other Gulf countries – by Nicholas Kristof

20.4.2016 – Sputnik News (* B T)

Terrorists Catch a Break in Luxurious Saudi Prisons

Looking at the luxurious settings in Saudi prisons for inmates with terrorism-related charges, it seems that Riyadh isn’t too willing to punish people who were caught fighting on the side of terrorist organizations in Syria, RT reported.

The high-security Al-Hair prison is the largest of five prisons established to lock up people for terrorism-related charges. First, it was full with al-Qaeda members, but more recently Daesh militants have been thrown to Al-Hair to serve their sentences.

"They also get water aerobics classes and even conjugal visits. And these prisoners are also said to have an Olympic-size swimming pool and art-therapy classes," RT's Nikki Aaron reported.

Hearing all of this, one can't but wonder whether Al-Hair is a prison or a holiday resort. With prison conditions like these, critics argue that Saudi Arabia has certain sympathy with terrorists fighting against the Syrian government.

The Washington Post had a similar story in the past, pointing out that it was was a bizarre concept that Saudi Arabia was providing way too relaxed conditions for terrorists.

This goes contradictory to Saudi Arabia's practice of beheading people for atheism, apostasy, adultery, sorcery and other deeds which law in most countries doesn't even consider criminal.

So, the Saudi government puts radicals who joined Daesh and fought the Syrian government into luxurious prisons, while beheading those who questioned God or engaged in homosexual relationships. Where's the logic in that? and here film:

He certainly came to another jail:

20.4.2016 – Time (B P)

My Husband Is in Jail for Speaking Out in Saudi Arabia

my husband, Dr. Mohammad Fahad Al-Qahtani. In 2013 the government of Saudi Arabia sentenced him to a 10-year prison sentence followed by an additional 10-year travel ban simply because he had the courage to call on the government to implement human rights and political reform for Saudi citizens. He was the co-founder and a board member of the Saudi Civil and Political Rights Association (ACPRA), which documented human-rights abuses by the Saudi government. For this peaceful and political activity, which would be normal in most societies, he was accused of “harming public order” and “setting up an unlicensed organization,” tried, convicted and sentenced.

Almost a month before Mohammed was convicted and ACPRA was disbanded by government edict, I flew with 3-month-old Layla and my four older children to the U.S., where Mohammed and I had graduated from university, to continue my studies – by Maha Qahtani

cp9 USA

US-Saudi relations: See also cp1 Most important

22.4.2016 – Sputnik News (A K P)

La guerra en Yemen busca también neutralizar la influencia china

Uno de los objetivos de Washington en Yemen es neutralizar la influencia de China en la región, en opinión de la profesora de Relaciones Internacionales de la Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia (UNED), Nazanin Armanian.

"Yemen es un país estratégico", explica Armanian en una entrevista en el número de abril de la revista El Viejo Topo.

Según aclara la experta en relaciones internacionales, "Estados Unidos interviene en el conflicto para controlar el estrecho de Bab el Mandeb", conocido como "puerta de las lágrimas".

Por ese estrecho, recuerda, "pasan los barcos chinos para entrar en el Mediterráneo". "Así pues, uno de los grandes objetivos de los norteamericanos es neutralizar la creciente influencia china en Yemen, y ganar la batalla contra Pekín por explotar el crudo de las cuencas de Masila y Shabwa", afirma.

Por ello, continúa, todo "era un pretexto para poder controlar la zona, probar nuevas armas y sobre todo la guerra de los drones, que comenzó en Yemen".

21.4.2016 – Aljazeera (* A P)

What to expect from Obama's GCC summit?

A second round of the US-GCC summit is taking place amid shifting political and economic scenes.

The second US-GCC summit comes at a time when the views of the United States and the Gulf Cooperation Council on regional politics are drastically different. Recent and open expressions of frustration by US President Barack Obama revealed some of the contentious differences on key issues.

On Thursday, Obama is expected to attend a GCC summit that comprises Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Oman.

According to the GCC spokesperson, the main issue on the summit's agenda will be the Iranian interventions in regional politics. The US, on the other hand, is more concerned with the persistent GCC-Iran rivalry and the burden it places on the US to "settle scores" once it gets out of capacity and out of hand.

Also high on the agenda, according to a White House official, is the fight against ISIL and other defence issues.

The US's call for coexistence, after violence and aggression has taken precedence, can prove elusive.

This is easily demonstrated after the bitter and costly confrontations in the region.

Also in anticipation of Obama's second visit, a group of human rights advocated have written an open letter to urge the president to pressure GCC leaders for political and civil reforms. However, such efforts are expected to be fruitless.

Last year, the US-GCC summit received similar appeals. Understandably, it is hard to conceptualise the link between more freedom and civil rights in GCC and regional stability, as there are many variables involved in fostering and enabling regional violence.

However, the most important ingredient remains to be an open political environment that enables people to freely express concerns, challenge violent ideologies and participate freely in political decision-making.

It is, therefore, expected that any strategies aimed at achieving regional stability and economic reforms will need to apply measures of meaningful political reforms, not only to drive regional stability but also to reduce the effect of violent ideology fuelling the regional conflicts.

It is not a question of luxury but of necessity to press for a space for a counter-discourse of moderation and modernisation, where the price of freedom of expression, and that of regional stability, is not paid in life or liberty – by Hala Aldosari, Visiting Scholar at the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington DC

Comment: There is nothing to be expected. Just words.

22.4.2016 – New York Times (*A P)

Unfinished Business From 9/11

Fourteen years after its completion, the full record of Congress’s investigation into the 9/11 attacks has not been published. Twenty-eight pages are still being withheld amid suspicions that what they contain could implicate the Saudi government and Saudi citizens in the terrorist strike.

President George W. Bush ordered the pages kept secret in 2002. In 2014, prodded by some of the 9/11 families, President Obama asked intelligence officials to work on declassifying the material. The process is still dragging on. The 28 pages should be released immediately. Americans still do not know exactly why 15 out of the 19 hijackers from Al Qaeda were Saudi citizens and whether that indicates efforts by influential Saudis, including in the powerful religious establishment, to support the plot. Former Senator Bob Graham, who was a co-chairman of the 2002 joint congressional inquiry into the attacks, has long claimed there is evidence of complicity by institutions and people beyond the 19 terrorists.

The Saudi government has long denied any involvement and that view was largely supported by the 9/11 Commission, an independent bipartisan panel that conducted a separate inquiry in 2004 and found “no evidence that the Saudi government as an institution or senior Saudi officials” funded Al Qaeda. Still, questions remain about the work of a number of Saudi-sponsored charities with financial links to Al Qaeda.

As Ben Rhodes, a White House official, said Monday, while it was not Saudi government policy to support Al Qaeda, “There were a number of very wealthy individuals in Saudi Arabia who would contribute, sometimes directly, to extremist groups, sometimes to charities that … ended up being ways to launder money to these groups.”

Because those connections remain unexplained, it’s important that the full congressional inquiry report be released.

Repairing troubled ties with Saudi Arabia, which cooperates closely with America on counterterrorism and security matters, requires that all the facts be known. The Saudis themselves have previously called for the release of the redacted pages. It’s past time to do that – by Editorial Board

21.4.2016 – Bloomberg (* A P)

Obama Stands by Tough Words for Saudis in Meeting With King

President Barack Obama reassured Saudi Arabia’s King Salman that the U.S. is his country’s ally during a private meeting in Riyadh on Wednesday, but made no apology for recent criticism of Saudi policies and insisted that its government must learn to co-exist with rival Iran, a U.S. official said.

Obama’s two-day stop in Riyadh, perhaps his last visit to the Middle East as president, is intended to reassure regional allies that the U.S. is committed to the fight against the Islamic State terrorist group and is not improving its relationship with Iran at their expense.

Obama met with King Salman at the beginning of a week-long trip to Saudi Arabia, the U.K. and Germany. He attended a meeting of the Gulf Cooperation Council, a union of Arab Persian Gulf states, on Thursday.

"The core of the relationship" with Saudi Arabia "remains very solid," Obama’s deputy national security adviser, Ben Rhodes, said at a briefing in Riyadh on Thursday. "We certainly understand that this is their neighborhood. Our point is simply that concern with Iran should not foreclose the opportunity for diplomatic engagement."

Rhodes said talks on Thursday with Arab leaders focused on bolstering their special forces, ballistic missile defense and maritime interdiction capabilities, steps the U.S. believes will better prepare the countries to defend against "asymmetric" threats posed by Iran and Islamic State.

Their discussion covered several regional conflicts, including in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and the West Bank, according to the White House.

The two leaders discussed human rights, focused on the Saudi judicial system, where they encountered their most serious disagreements, the official said.

The president emphasized the importance of Saudi Arabia co-existing peacefully with Iran, rather than using its military to engage in sectarian conflicts, the official said – by Justin Sink and TToluse Olurunnipa

21.4.2016 – The Intercept (*A P)

Senator Says Bombing Yemen Is Distracting Saudis From Fighting Terror

Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., is questioning the Saudi commitment to fighting Al Qaeda and ISIS, warning that the war in Yemen is distracting Saudi Arabia from operations against extremists.

The White House has defended Saudi Arabia as an “effective national security partner.” Responding to a question about Yemen on Tuesday, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said that the “United States and Saudi Arabia have worked together to apply pressure to Al Qaeda plotters in Yemen.”

But at a Brookings Institution discussion about the U.S.-Saudi relationship on Thursday, Murphy questioned the kingdom’s commitment to combating Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) and ISIS, in light of the war in Yemen.

“The result of this conflict … has been the creation of enormous space for the growth of AQAP … which grows uncontested in Yemen today, because of the refusal of the coalition to go after [them],” he said.

Murphy introduced a bill last week, along with Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., that would block arms transfers to Saudi Arabia unless the State Department certifies that the kingdom is “taking all necessary measures” to target AQAP and ISIS, and is minimizing civilian casualties – by Zaid Jilani and Alex Emmons

21.4.2016 – Fox News (A P)

GIULIANI: I was given a check by a Saudi prince for $10M & I tore it up. He can keep his money & go burn it in hell.

21.4.2016 – CNN (* A P)

U.S. and Saudi Arabia, trapped in a bad marriage

clearly something is rotten in the state of the U.S.-Saudi relationship.

Is Saudi Arabia a U.S. ally?

That depends of course on how you define the word ally. But by any measure countries that don't share common values and whose interests on many critical issues seem to fundamentally collide can't simply be described the way we might look at U.S. relations with fellow democracies like Britain or Canada.

Saudi Arabia is an authoritarian regime that discriminates against women, doesn't permit religious freedom, and prevents freedom of the press. It has been exporting a fundamentalist Wahhabist ideology for years that demonizes Shia, Jews, Christians and the West.

Yet Saudi Arabia isn't the Islamic state, nor as some analysts have suggested, a junior version of it.

It's not seeking to undermine the regional order or sponsor terror against the West and create a caliphate. In fact, the Saudis are themselves a victim of jihadi terror and have worked closely with the United States against al Qaeda in Yemen and on counterterrorism against ISIS.

Still al Qaeda developed out of Wahhabist doctrine and Saudi Arabia has done more than its fair share to nurture Islamic extremists and to fund jihadi groups in Syria such al Nusra. And the latest Saudi threat to sell off U.S. securities if Congress passes legislation holding them responsible for any official involvement in the 9/11 terror attacks highlights a disturbing possibility of some link.

Do U.S.-Saudi interests fundamentally diverge?

Is Saudi Arabia headed for instability or collapse?

Is the U.S.-Saudi relationship too big to fail?

Probably for now. However imperfect Saudi policies, the United States still requires local friends in the region to help stabilize matters and pursue American interests. The United States may increasingly be weaning itself off Arab hydrocarbons, but the rest of the world isn't. And since oil still trades in a single market, a disruption in supply will impact the economies and markets around the world, including the United States.

So, stability in Saudi Arabia and the Gulf is still a vital American interest. And Saudi Arabia with all its imperfections is still the key element in that. Moreover, Wahhabis or not, Washington still needs the Saudis for intelligence sharing and operations against ISIS and al Qaeda affiliates in Yemen and requires Riyadh's cooperation in trying to manage the Syrian problem if there is to be an outcome to the current civil war more favorable than the black hole of chaos that exists there now.

Will relations Improve under the next President? – by Aaron David Miller, vice president and distinguished scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars

Comment: For me a rather weak “Yes, but..” show coming to the conclusion that a close alliance between the US and Saudi Arabia will be necessary. Human rights and war crimes do not play any role in such thinking.

20.4.2016 – The Independent (* A P)

Barack Obama urged to rule out trading US cluster bombs for Saudi favour

Exclusive: Rights groups call on president to act on use of controversial munitions during visit to kingdom

Barack Obama has been urged to use his visit to Saudi Arabia to rule out selling controversial cluster bombs to the kingdom amid mounting evidence they have been used against civilians in Yemen.

The US President’s visit came amid increasing tension between the two allies over America’s ever-closer relationship with Iran, as well as the potential release of documents purportedly linking Saudi officials to the 9/11 terror attacks.

White House officials said Mr Obama and Gulf leaders were set to discuss “deeper cooperation” in the fight against Isis alongside broader talks over ways to “resolve regional conflicts”.

But the President has also come under pressure to use the opportunity to raise a range of issues with the Saudi human rights record – not least its indiscriminate Yemeni bombing campaign.

Speaking to The Independent, representatives for Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International and the Campaign Against Arms Trade said it was time for Mr Obama to take a stand over the Saudi-led air strikes which have killed more than 3,200 civilians in little over a year and could amount to war crimes – by Adam Withnall

20.4.2016 – Hintergrund (* B P)

9/11-Anschläge: Spannungen zwischen Washington und Riad

In den USA wächst der Druck, Dokumente freizugeben, die eine Verbindung saudischer Stellen zu den 9/11-Attentätern belegen sollen. Riad droht derweil mit Abzug seiner US-Vermögen, sollte ein Gesetz durchkommen, das es erlaubt, saudische Offizielle wegen Verwicklungen in die 9/11-Anschläge vor US-Gerichten anzuklagen –

Wie die New York Times am Wochenende berichtete, drohte der saudische Außenminister Adel al-Dschubeir kürzlich damit, Vermögenswerte in einer Gesamthöhe von 750 Milliarden US-Dollar aus den USA abzuziehen. Anlass ist eine Gesetzesinitiative, die Hinterbliebene der Opfer der Anschläge vom 11. September 2001 angeregt haben. Sollte der US-Kongress das Gesetzesvorhaben billigen, könnten Mitglieder beziehungsweise Mitarbeiter der saudischen Regierung in den Vereinigten Staaten wegen Unterstützung der 9/11-Anschläge vor Gericht angeklagt werden. Das saudische Königshaus befürchtet das Einfrieren seiner US-Vermögen, sollte eine entsprechende Anklage gerichtlich in die Wege geleitet werden.

Die 9/11-Hinterbliebenen werfen Riad vor, einige der offiziell als Attentäter beschuldigten Männer unter anderem mit Geldzahlungen unterstützt zu haben. „Eifrig“, so die New York Times, arbeite das Weiße Haus an der Verhinderung des Gesetzesvorhabens, und sorge damit für „Wut unter den Hinterbliebenen“. Es sei verblüffend, dass „unsere Regierung die Saudis gegenüber ihren eigenen Bürgern in Schutz nimmt“, zitiert die Zeitung Mindy Kleinberg, deren Ehemann am 11. September 2001 im World Trade Center starb. (1)

Auch Kristen Breitweiser, die ebenfalls durch die Anschläge zur Witwe wurde, fragt sich, warum die US-Regierung nicht „die Rechte der US-Bürger schützt, die Opfer der Terrorattacke“ wurden. Offenbar habe das arabische Königreich „zu viel in die US-Wirtschaft investiert, um zur Rechenschaft gezogen“ werden zu können. (2)

Mittlerweile ist der Streit um die Gesetzesinitiative auch Thema des Präsidentschaftswahlkampfs.

Auftrieb erhalten die Befürworter der Initiative durch jüngste Aussagen des ehemaligen Senators Bob Graham. Er leitete von 2001 bis 2003 den Geheimdienstausschuss des Senats. In dieser Funktion saß er dem Ausschuss des Senats vor, der – gemeinsam mit einem Ausschuss des Repräsentantenhauses – nach dem 11. September die erste Untersuchung der Anschläge durchführte, die insbesondere aufklären sollte, ob die US-Sicherheitsbehörden diese hätten verhindern können. Im Dezember 2002 hatte die „Joint Inquiry“ des Kongresses ihren Abschlussbericht vorgelegt.

Vor zehn Tagen sprach Graham gegenüber dem US-Sender CBS von einer „substanziellen“ Unterstützung der 9/11-Terroristen durch saudische Stellen – gemeint waren Regierungsmitglieder, wohlhabende Einzelpersonen und einflussreiche Wohlfahrtsverbände. (4) Graham verwies in diesem Zusammenhang auf einen 28-seitigen Bericht, den unter anderem das FBI für den Kongressausschuss angefertigt hatte, und der der Frage nachging, wer die 9/11-Hijacker in den USA unterstützt hatte. Das Dokument steht bis heute unter Verschluss. Über seinen Inhalt dürfen die Mitglieder des Ausschusses, die ihn einsehen konnten, weder öffentlich reden, noch durften sie die daraus gewonnen Erkenntnisse in den Abschlussbericht einfließen lassen.

In dem 28-seitigen Geheimpapier soll es insbesondere um die Verbindungen von Nawaf al-Hamzi und Khalid al-Mihdhar zu Omar al-Bayoumi gehen. Erstere werden zu den Führungsköpfen der 9/11-Hijacker gezählt, und sollen an der Entführung der Passagiermaschine beteiligt gewesen sein, die ins Pentagon krachte.

Bei letzterem soll es sich um einen saudischen Agenten handeln, der laut Graham bereits vor 9/11 vom FBI als solcher identifiziert worden war.

20.4.2016 – Middle East Eye (* A P)

ANALYSIS: The spectre of 9/11 looms large during Obama's visit to Riyadh

On the two-day visit, the US president focused on issues including Syria and Yemen, amid US moves to hold Saudi royals accountable for 9/11

Despite the suggestions of tensions, Davidson stressed that the meeting would have been “very cordial … with Salman having a long standing relationship with the US”.

Christian Koch, the director of the Gulf Research Center Foundation in Geneva, also said the meetings themselves would not be tense and the reports of a rift were grossly exaggerated.

“Saudi will clearly put down its position and they will see how they can come to an agreement that furthers relations,” he told Middle East Eye. “So while there will be differences of opinion, there will not be tensions, and these will be dealt with cordially.”

At the heart of tensions is a highly contested bill that could see families of 9/11 survivors sue Saudi Arabia.

While it is unclear whether the bill will be discussed during Obama’s visit, differences over the war in Syria, Yemen and also relations with Iran are expected to feature prominently during the meeting.

Shortly before Obama landed, the US and the GCC announced that they would start carrying out joint naval patrols to block any Iranian arms shipments from reaching Yemen where Iran is accused of backing the Houthi rebels and where Saudi has led a more than year-long war to roll back their advances.

Analysts widely believe that Obama’s visit is intended to mend ties, but it remains unclear whether he can offer enough reassurances to Riyadh over the relative thaw with Iran, a source of tension between the allies for years which has accelerated after the nuclear deal with Iran ended years’ worth of sanctions.

“Central to all these issues will be the spectre of Iran’s regional role. Iran will cast a shadow over all the crises that they will discuss,” said Nashashibi.

The US has shifted closer to Iran since a key nuclear deal was signed last year, alleviating some sanctions in exchange for curtailing its nuclear ambitions.

Saudi has traditionally been weary of such a rapprochement, but analysts believe that Riyadh will not use the two-day meeting to try and push for a fundamental shift.

“There is a general recognition, even in Riyadh, that the US is not going to abandon Saudi tomorrow," said Koch.

"Iran is problematic enough and this is an opportunity for Saudi to say I told you so to the US [and say] that despite the comprehensive plan being agreed last year, one continues to see Iran engaging in negative behaviour – its support for [Syrian President Bashar al] Assad, its support for militias in Iraq, its support for the Houthis [in Yemen] and its own missile programme."

Nashashibi also said that while Iran “will remain a big bone of contention, the two sides will try to make the best of the fact that their positions are different and so they will be looking into face-saving formulas that show that while we maybe don’t agree, we are working together". – by Simona Sikimic

20.4.2016 – DPA (A K P)

Obama zu Besuch in Saudi-Arabien: Vorwürfe wegen Syrien

Zum Auftakt einer schwierigen sechstägigen Reise in den Nahen Osten und nach Europa ist US-Präsident Barack Obama in Riad mit dem saudischen König Salman zusammengekommen. Das rund zweistündige Treffen sollte die zuletzt stark angespannten Beziehungen zwischen den beiden traditionellen Verbündeten wieder verbessern. Im Zentrum des Gespräches stand das zerrüttete Verhältnis des sunnitischen Königreichs zum schiitischen Nachbarn Iran.

Auch über den Kampf gegen die Terrormiliz Islamischer Staat (IS) sowie über die Bürgerkriege in Syrien und im Jemen wollten sich die Staatsoberhäupter austauschen. In beiden Krisen ist derzeit keine politische Lösung in Sicht.

20.4.2016 – Human Rights Watch (A K P)

Dispatches: Yemen Accountability Should Top Obama's Saudi Agenda

The devastation of Yemen should be at the top of the agenda when US President Barack Obama visits Saudi Arabia today to attend the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) summit in Riyadh. Five GCC members, led by Saudi Arabia and armed in part by the US, are part of a coalition that has conducted dozens of unlawful airstrikes in Yemen during the past year.

Obama and Gulf leaders should make it a priority to end airstrikes that are unlawfully killing civilians. Saudi Arabia, as the leader of the coalition, should carry out credible and impartial investigations of alleged unlawful attacks and hold those responsible to account as required by the laws of war. Civilian victims of wrongful attacks should be compensated. Until that happens, the United States should suspend all weapons sales to Saudi Arabia. That just might get the Saudis’ attention – by Belkis Wille

Comment: Off course, she is right. But it is obvious that investigations by the Saudis will not be worth the paper they are written on. HRW always had required an independent investigation, just hold on with this claim.

19.4.2016 – The Intercept (* B K P)

Obama Went From Condemning Saudis for Abuses to Arming Them to the Teeth

Obama is making his fourth trip to Riyadh, having presided over record-breaking U.S. arms sales to Saudi Arabia while offering only muted criticism of the kingdom’s human rights violations.

And don’t expect the president to speak up while he’s there.

In January, after a record-setting year for Saudi beheadings, Saudi authorities set off protests by executing Shia cleric and regime critic Nimr al-Nimr. U.S. response was muted. The State Department merely said the execution “risks exacerbating sectarian tensions at a time when they urgently need to be reduced” — and then fell silent on the repression of the following protests.

Last year, amazingly enough, Saudi Arabia became the head of the 47-member U.N. Human Rights Council. When a State Department spokesperson was asked for his reaction, he responded: “Frankly, we would welcome it. We’re close allies.”

Obama administration officials have not offered on-the-record explanations for why Saudi human rights abuses don’t play a greater role in U.S. policy. But in the trove of documents released from former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s private email server, Clinton acknowledges that the U.S. government holds the Saudis to a different standard.

Obama’s visit this week will be taking place in the shadow of an ongoing U.S.-supplied, Saudi-led campaign in Yemen, where Saudi airstrikes have killed thousands of civilians.

Since the Saudi coalition began its campaign last March, it has relied on U.S.-produced aircraft, “smart bombs,” guided missiles, and internationally banned cluster bombs. A recent report from Human Rights Watch, for instance, found evidence that the coalition used American bombs in a March 15 attack on a market in northwestern Yemen where nearly a hundred civilians were killed. As Iona Craig reported in November, Yemen’s architectural history is also being destroyed by bombs sold to Saudi Arabia by the United States.

According to a new poll released earlier this month, 82 percent of Yemenis between the ages of 18 and 24 now view the United States as an enemy.

But arms sales in general — and specifically to Saudi Arabia — have been a consistent element of Obama’s tenure.

“Many Americans would be surprised to learn that his administration has brokered more arms deals than any administration of the past 70 years, Republican or Democratic,” said William Hartung, a senior adviser to Secure Assistance Monitor, a progressive group that tracks arms sales.

To put that in context, in his first five years as president, Obama sold $30 billion more in weapons than President Bush did during his entire eight years as commander in chief.

Saudi Arabia maintains a huge network of D.C. lobbyists, public relations experts, and a subsidized think tank to promote its cozy relationship with Washington. And as Lee Fang reported in December, it launched a particularly massive new charm offensive shortly after beginning its air and ground assault in Yemen.

Murphy expressed hopes that Obama would press the Saudi king on his conduct in Yemen. “Right now, the Saudis’ focus on Yemen is distracting them from the war against violent extremists,” Murphy said in a statement emailed to The Intercept. “And personally, I hope President Obama takes this opportunity to have a frank discussion with Saudi Arabia about their continued backing for religious and educational institutions around the world that promote sectarianism and intolerance.”

But many activists are losing hope that the U.S. relationship with Saudi Arabia will change – by Zaid Jilani and Alex Emmons

19.4.2016 – New York Times (* A K P)

Obama Shouldn’t Trade Cluster Bombs for Saudi Arabia’s Friendship

The Saudi-American arms deals are a continuation of a booming business that has developed between Washington and Riyadh during the Obama years.

The Pentagon claims that these arms transfers to Saudi Arabia “improve the security of an important partner which has been and continues to be an important force for political stability and economic progress in the Middle East.” Recent Saudi actions suggest otherwise.

A prime example of what’s wrong with unbridled American weapons transfers to the Saudi government is the Saudi-led war in Yemen.

The use of cluster bombs is of particular concern.

The Obama administration says that it has urged restraint from the Saudis, but that doesn’t appear to have worked.

But American arms transfers to Saudi Arabia are questionable not only on human rights grounds. They also have negative strategic consequences. The Saudi-led incursion against Houthi rebels in Yemen has opened the way for jihadist groups to gain territory and influence.

Mr. Obama seems to understand that uncritical support for the Saudis will only make the security situation in the Middle East worse.

One justification that has been put forward for the continued flow of weaponry from the United States to Saudi Arabia is that it provides reassurance to the kingdom’s leadership that Washington won’t tilt toward the Iranians in the wake of the deal reached last year over Iran’s nuclear program. But if demonstrating a commitment to the Saudi government entails supporting deadly and reckless initiatives, like the war in Yemen, the policy is not worth the price.

Another reason the arms deals with Saudi Arabia keep coming is that they are a bonanza for American arms makers that need foreign markets to make up for a leveling off of Pentagon procurement. But domestic economic concerns should not be allowed to override American security interests in the Middle East – by William D. Hartung, director of the Arms and Security Project at the Center for International Policy and a senior adviser to the Security Assistance Monitor

? – John Massaria (B P)

Film: Ken O'Keefe Breaks Down The 28 Redacted Pages of The Congressional Report (*) and Political Environment and Extortion 17
Filmed & Edited By John Massaria for UniBrowStudio Vision
Thank you Ken O'Keefe for the brief but hard hitting interview at FYM4 hosted by Bob Tuskin

More articles on the US-Saudi relations and the Obama visit, not checked, not rated:

20.4.2016 – The National Interest (-- A P)

Obama's Last Chance with Saudi Arabia

20.4.2016 – New York Times (-- A P)

Obama and King Salman of Saudi Arabia Meet, but Deep Rifts Remain

18.4.2016 – New York Times (-- A P)

Obama Will Meet With Gulf Leaders. Here’s a Probable Agenda.

17.4.2016 - New York Times (-- A P)

An Old Alliance Faces New Pressures as Obama Heads to Saudi Arabia

cp10 Großbritannien / Great Britain

21.4.2016 – British Government, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (B K P)

Yemen - in-year update December 2015

Human rights abuses in Yemen continued on a large scale in the second half of 2015, including: intense conflict affecting the civilian population; the use of child soldiers; attacks on journalists and human rights defenders; arbitrary detentions; destruction of civilian infrastructure; and further damage to Yemen’s cultural heritage. The security and humanitarian situation continued to deteriorate in much of Yemen due to the conflict. On 1 July, the UN declared Yemen to be a Level Three Emergency, making Yemen one of the four most severe, large-scale humanitarian crises in the world. The scale of humanitarian need in Yemen is vast, with 21.2m people – 80% of the population – in need of humanitarian assistance, according to the UN. The conflict has significantly impeded the ability of the Yemeni authorities to protect human rights. Yemeni civil society’s ability to contribute to the upholding of human rights has also been affected.

Recognising the deteriorating human rights situation, the UK supported a UN Human Rights Council resolution in October 2015, which called on the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) to provide technical assistance to the government of Yemen, and assist a Yemeni National Independent Commission of Inquiry.

The UK welcomed the government of Yemen’s announcement in October that all of Yemen’s ports were open, and the subsequent improvement in aid and commercial supplies reaching Yemen.

The conflict has led to a shortage of fuel, electricity, and civil service salaries, which has affected the work of many state institutions, including the courts, affecting access to justice.

Comment: This report is not interesting by the things mentioned, but by those not mentioned. There is a clear tendency not to mention the Saudi air raids, which have caused the most impact in Yemen, or the Saudi blockade as reason for the increasing humanitarian catastrophe. The Houthis are blamed several times for their crimes – the Saudis not any times, as if there would not be any aerial war. In these points, the report stays in a impersonal form. Just mentioned as: “destruction of civilian infrastructure; and further damage to Yemen’s cultural heritage”. The Saudi blockade only shows up in: “The conflict has led to a shortage of fuel”. There is off course nothing to read of the fact that the British helped to wreck down the demand of an independent investigation of all war crimes in Yemen in the UN Human Rights Council which was replaced by a ridiculous resolution supporting an “investigation” by the Hadi government. – This statement is a piece of propaganda supporting the interest of the Tory government in staying in alliance with the Saudis – for reasons of geopolitics and arm trade.

21.4.2016 – RT (A K P)

Saudi Arabia bankrolled visits for British MPs while dropping bombs on Yemen

Saudi Arabia has paid for 11 Conservative MPs to visit the oil-rich kingdom on ‘parliamentary fact-finding’ missions in the last several months, while continuing to wage its deadly airstrike campaign against Yemen, it has emerged.

According to the latest version of parliament’s register of interests, 11 MPs have declared “parliamentary fact-finding” visits paid for by the Saudi Arabian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Independent reports.

19.4.2016 – They work for you (A P)

MPs asking the government

Tom Brake, Shadow LD Spokesperson (Foreign Affairs), Liberal Democrat Chief Whip, Shadow LD Leader of the House of Commons

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, whether equipment provided by the UK has been used to facilitate the delivery of cluster munitions by the Saudi Arabian forces in the Yemen conflict.

Tobias Ellwood, The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

We are aware of reports of the alleged use of Cluster Munitions by the Coalition in Yemen. We have raised this issue with the Saudi Arabian authorities and, in line with our obligations under the Convention on Cluster Munitions, continue to encourage Saudi Arabia, as a non-party to the Convention, to accede to it.

Andrew Rosindell Conservative, Romford

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what steps he is taking to monitor the use of military equipment provided by the UK to Saudi Arabia.

Tobias Ellwood, The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

The UK operates one of the most robust arms export control regimes in the world. All applications for strategic export control licences for military and dual-use goods are assessed on a case-by-case basis against the ConsolidatedEU and National Arms Export Licensing Criteria (the Criteria), in a manner consistent with the UK’s international obligations. This assessment takes account of all relevant factors at the time of the application, including how the equipment will be used by the end-user. A licence will not be issued for export of items to any country, including Saudi Arabia, if to do so would be inconsistent with any mandatory provision of the Criteria, including where we assess there is a clear risk that the items might be used in the commission of a serious violation of IHL. The Government is satisfied that extant licences for Saudi Arabia are compliant with the Criteria.

The British Government monitors the situation in Yemen closely, including reports of alleged violations of International Humanitarian Law (IHL). The Ministry of Defence continues to monitor incidents of alleged IHL violations, using available information, which in turn informs our overall assessment of Saudi Arabia’s IHL compliance in Yemen. We consider a range of information from government sources, foreign governments, the media and international non-governmental organisations. We have provided training and advice to Saudi Arabia to support continued compliance with IHL and minimise civilian casualties.

Comment: Really no answers to the questions. The government just repeats and repeats and repeats and repeats and repeats and repeats and repeats the same phrases.

19.4.2016 – Press TV Iran (B K P)

UK military train Saudi forces in target Training in Yemen Conflict

The UK’s support for Saudi Arabia in its continued aggression against Yemen has come under fire once again. A human rights group has found that the British military is playing a larger role in the conflict than what was thought before. Our correspondent in London, Mohamed Walji has more.

Statement of Dr. Karim from MONA Relief at 1.29 min.

cp11 Deutschland / Germany

8.4.2016 – Truth out (* B K P)

Video: Noam Chomsky on Germany's Weapons Exports to Israel, Saudi Arabia and the Refugee Crisis

In this video, MIT professor, anarchist, political philosopher and renowned linguist Noam Chomsky discusses the impacts of German arms and weapons exports into Saudi Arabia and Israel. He also talks about the refugee and Syrian crisis that is engulfing neighbouring states as well as the European continent.

How does the military industrial complex of Germany affect the security of the populations of the countries in the Arab world?

Do military and arms exports promote stability in the region?

What are the roots of the refugee crisis that the European Union as well as neighbouring countries to Syria and Iraq are facing?

I should say Germany is a pretty minor actor when compared with the United States in this respect, I am not approving of what its doing but these are overwhelmingly US, secondly British and French policies.

In the Levant, in Syria and you know that area, the source of the crisis, major source there - two major sources of the crisis - which flow together: One of them is the US & British Invasion of Iraq which hit the country like a sledgehammer - horrible effects in the country - killed hundreds of thousands of people destroyed much of the country and among other things set-off/incited a sectarian conflict which had not existed before, and that sectarian was exacerbated by the torture and terror and other atrocities, but that crisis is now tearing Iraq to shreds and is tearing the region to shreds - expanded to Syria and elsewhere. That's one factor.

The other parallel factor was what Patrick Cockburn, one of the leading correspondents in the region calls, "The Wahabization" of Sunni Islam coming from Saudi Arabia both with funding and with doctrine - extremist, radical, Salafi-Wahabi Doctrines coming out of Saudi Arabia are being spread through the region with not only money but also clerics, madrassas, lots of devices. And these things coincide. They have led to, ISIS for example is an out-growth of them. The same with the other Jihadi groups in Syria. =

cp12 Andere Länder / Other countries

22.4.2016 – (A K P)

Sind die Waffenlieferungen in die Golfregion rechtmässig? – Bundesrat erntet Kritik von Juristen

Am Mittwoch hat der Bundesrat [der Schweiz] dem Druck der Wirtschaft nachgegeben und Waffenexporte in die Golfregion erlaubt. Die Bewilligungen stehen nach Ansicht von Juristen im Widerspruch zum Wortlaut der Kriegsmaterialverordnung.

22.4.2016 – Muftah (* A P)

Canada Struggles to Justify Arms Deal with Saudi Arabia

Canada’s foreign ministry quietly approved a controversial $15 billion arms deal with Saudi Arabia earlier this month, according to newly released documents. The revelations clarify that the deal was negotiated and finalized by Justin Trudeau’s cabinet, and not by the previous government, as Canadian officials had initially claimed.

Canada’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Stéphane Dion, has taken personal responsibility for approving the arms transfer. Dion has, however, attempted to justify his decision based on the potential diplomatic fallout with the Saudi government and commercial disadvantages that could harm Canadian business interests when negotiating future contracts abroad. “If you cancelled a contract of this magnitude, it will resonate everywhere,” Minister Dion said to The Globe and Mail, “And Saudi Arabia will have to react.”

The minister reportedly failed to consult with any human rights organizations in reaching his decision. But, with the deal in place, Dion believes Canada will be better positioned “to make progress on a range of issues, including human rights,” with the Saudi government.

Separate documents released in the lawsuit indicate that Ottawa was well aware that Saudi’s human rights situation had worsened since the contract was initially announced in early 2014.

Daniel Turp and his lawyers are part of a growing global movement seeking to limit the transfer of arms to the Saudi government. “This case is in part about sending a message that Canadian weapons should not be used against civilian populations,” Anne-Julie Asselin, a lawyer for Prof. Turp, told The Intercept, “But it’s also about setting a precedent. If Saudi Arabia can’t buy these weapons here, we don’t want them to buy them from another country either.”

Through his lawsuit, Prof. Turp hopes to set an important precedent for the international community at a time when the kingdom is under fire for its brazen military intervention in Yemen – by Sam Khanlari

18.4.2016 – Ottawa Citizen (** A P)

Gormley: Dion asked, I've got answers: 20 problems with the Saudi arms deal

Canadians have a problem with the Saudi arms deal, and Global Affairs Minister Stéphane Dion doesn’t understand why. “Where is your problem? I don’t understand,” he asked reporters last week.

The man is confused. His confusion is reasonable, in fact. There isn’t merely one problem with the government’s handling of the deal. There are 20 problems.

Dion, who helped create the problem (sic), now wants to know what the problem (sic) is. Allow me, then, to explain.

1. The government charges ahead to sell one of the world’s most notorious human rights abusers $15-billion worth of arms. This, a moral problem, is serious enough. It’s not isolated.

2. The deal seems to violate Canada’s own export rules. This suggests the Canadian government doesn’t respect Canadian regulations.

3. The deal may violate an arms trade treaty the government has promised to sign. This suggests the government doesn’t respect the diplomatic practice of honouring such commitments they’ve said they’ll make.

4. Canadians tend to oppose the deal, but support the Liberals; the Liberals campaigned on multilateral principles that the deal undermines, but support the deal. This suggests disrespect for Canadian opinion, unless, of course, Canadian opinion favours Liberal election wins, in which case Canadian opinion is inspired and sacrosanct.

5. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau justifies the deal by calling machine-gun-wielding armoured vehicles “jeeps.” This suggests he’s ignorant about the nature of Canada’s biggest arms sale; or he’s ignorant about the nature of jeeps; or he’s glib about war.

6. Dion justifies the deal by claiming it’s done; then Dion authorizes the export permits, proving it wasn’t done. This suggests Dion doesn’t know the meaning of the word “done.”

7. The Liberals say the Conservatives started it. This suggests the government is a five-year-old child.

8. The Liberals say the NDP would do the same if it could. This suggests the government is a smug five-year-old child.

9. The Liberals say another country would sell Saudi Arabia the weapons if Canada didn’t. This suggests the government, smug five-year-old child that it is, didn’t listen to its mother when she asked whether it would jump off a cliff if its friends jumped too.

10. The government calls Saudi Arabia a friend. This suggests it has the world’s worst taste in friends.

[follow 11–20]

There are the problems. Where’s the responsible conviction? – by Shannon Gormley

Comment: Great. And many points fit for US, UK, France, Germany…

cp13a Waffenhandel / Arms trade

Siehe / See cp10, 11, 12

cp13b Flüchtlinge / Refugees

Siehe cp1 Am wichtigsten / See cp1 Most important

cp14 Terrorismus / Terrorism

22.4.2016 – Khabar Agency (A T)

#‎Yemen: A gunman killed and injured 8 people in ‪#‎Dhamar

22.4.2016 – The Independent (** B T)

Isis documents leak reveals profile of average militant as young, well-educated but with only 'basic' knowledge of Islamic law

Military analysts in the US said the importance of insight gained using the documents 'cannot be overstated'

Male, 26, single, quite well-educated but not an expert on the Quran – this is the profile of an average fighter joining Isis.

Analysis of thousands of entry documents leaked from the terrorist group has provided vital new insight into the background and expertise of its international jihadists.

The US military’s Combating Terrorism Center (CTC) said all evidence pointed to the cache being genuine, exposing personal details of 4,188 militants who joined Isis in 2013 and 2014.

“The importance of this data for understanding the Islamic State and, in particular, the foreign fighter flow, cannot be overstated,” analysts said, hailing an important step in fathoming the group’s motivations and techniques.

A unique personnel form exists for each individual, containing their real and “war” names, ages, education level, “jihad experience”, nationalities and numerous other details.

Each recruit was also asked whether they wanted to be a fighter, istishhadi (suicide bomber), or inghimasi (suicide fighter), with the overwhelming majority choosing the former.

Analysis by the CTC, an academic institution at the United States Military Academy, revealed citizens of 77 countries in Isis ranks, with the highest number identifying themselves as Saudi Arabian.

Another startling finding was the level of education listed, with most of the recruits saying they had completed secondary school and many listing higher education and university degrees.

The report described the group as “generally well educated” and said that although some of the fighters recorded no formal education, a roughly equal number held advanced degrees.

PhDs in economics, computer science, English, physiology and teaching were among those listed, with Western fighters being more highly educated on average.

The one area of education that was noticeably lacking, however, was that in Islamic law, or Sharia.

Of those who answered a question on the level of their religious knowledge, 70 per cent described it as “basic”, while those citing greater expertise were mainly Saudis, Egyptians, Tunisians and Indonesians.

The finding supports analysts’ assertions that Isis has twisted the Quran to serve its purposes, introducing brutal and “un-Islamic” punishments in its territories – by Lizzie Dearden

cp15 Propaganda

21.4.2016 – Arab Times (A P)

Plotters of coup’ in Yemen waste time, innocent blood

IT LOOKS like the Houthis and the deposed president Ali Abdullah Saleh do not want the solution to the problem in Yemen. They do not want to put a stop to the bloodshed and disaster and other than this there is no other interpretation for the delay in dialogue in Kuwait.

They will not gain anything by shedding blood of the innocent people. They are buying time in the hope of seeing a miracle on the horizon to resuscitate the coup after it was crushed by the supporters loyal to the government and the 25-member Arab coalition.

The Operation Resolve has poured cold water on all Iranian expansionist projects by defeating the insurgent forces of Ansarullah of the deposed leader.

If the Houthis and the deposed president are betting for time to change the current situation on the ground to better their chances during the dialogue, they are day-dreaming.

The destiny of the Houthis and the deposed leader has been sealed and there is no going back. The time is now to cut off the arms of al-Qaeda and DAESH and put an end to the criminal adventurism of the Houthis.

Therefore, the excuses which have snowballed from Sana’a and Saeda will not change the situation on the ground rather they will be dragged to the international gallows based on Decision No. 2216.

These people have no alternative to national peace talks to ease the pressure on them. It is the only way out for them. The idea to continue with the war adds to their criminal record which will close the window of opportunity in front of them.

The world does not need any proof to substantiate the violations committed by the Houthis since the first time a ceasefire agreement was reached.

The crimes they commit are clear for everyone to see to an extent that even their supporters can see through their lies. This made it necessary for the resistance forces and the Islamic coalition to put a limited action to stop the Houthis in their track so if they are keen on getting out of the crisis they should stop their maneuvers and start looking for a way out to heal the Yemen wound. - – by Ahmed Al-Jarallah – Editor-in-Chief, the Arab Times

Continue reading :

Comment: A full propaganda round-up.

21.4.2016 – Hit 967 (A P)

Yemen thanks Emirates Red Crescent on first anniversary of Operation Restoring Hope

The Yemeni government has thanked the UAE’s Emirates Red Crescent for its continuous support for the country.

It comes at a celebration held to mark the first anniversary of Operation Restoring Hope by the Saudi-led Arab Coalition.

According to national news agency WAM, the government also commended the ERC’s assistance to Yemen’s health, educational and energy sectors.

It has also emphasised that the ERC has saved thousands of lives because of its medical aid to hospitals in Aden.

Comment: “Operation Restoring Hope”: an Orwellian name for the Saudi coalition bombing campaign from April 21, 2015 onward. The Emirati red crescent might have saved many lives – bombing and starving because of the blockade took much more. But praising the Saudis and their allies is one of the main tasks of this Hadi “government”.

21.4.2016 – Aljazeera (A P)

Yemen: Is a political deal on the horizon?

As long as state sponsors of terrorism such as Iran are involved in Yemen, a political deal remains remote – by Luke Coffey

Comment: A rather crazy piece of propaganda from an US think tank, not even stated which one. Iran has bombed Yemen to ruins, has blocked the country to starvation, had piled weapons for billions bought from the US, UK and 20 other countries, has inspired radical Islam around the world? You could think that when reading this article. You rather think that description would fit to Saudi Arabia? This here is a piece of propaganda, stupid.

Comment by Jamila Hanan: I'm guessing much of #Saudi #Yemen peace negotiations will be about trying to secure immunity from war crime prosecutions.

20.4.2016 – The Peninsula Qatar (A P)

Hi, Bye and Thanks, Mr. President!

President Obama is a lame-duck president. His presidency will be remembered by many as the man who let us down. President Obama was wrongfully advised that we had “free-ride” in fighting terrorism. Facts and innocent blood of victims of ISIS and AlQa’edah from Kuwait to Jezan, prove otherwise. He thinks of leaving behind a legacy as a man who appeased Iran. Facts and innocent blood of Syrians, Iraqis and Yemenis stipulate exactly the opposite. Obama may think that he confronted ISIS and amassed tens of countries to fight it not realizing that by ignoring its creator, Basshar Alassad, his endeavors will all go in vein. Mr. Obama is too frightened to even name Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, as a belligerent “free-rider” opposing the two-state solution to the Palestinian plight and continuing settlements building on Palestinian lands. The list of let-down policies of Mr. Obama towards his allies worldwide is longer than a newspaper column. Ukraine, Turkey, Iraq, South Korea and Japan in the face of North Korean nuclear threats and most recently Nagorno-Karabakh, to name just a few.

Yet one must thank Mr. Obama for his wake-up policies of hesitation for us to start thinking of a new strategy for self-reliance. The GCC countries have great sources of wealth and know-how to designate a new strategy of regional security. The so-called Obama “doctrine” must be transcended by the “Salman Doctrine”. Resolve of measures for greater integration and deeper cooperation among the GCC countries is an urgent priority – by Saad bin Teflah Al Ajmi, former Minister of Information in Kuwait and a Professor at Kuwait University

Comment: Interesting as a certainly wide-spread opinion in the GCC countries. Obama is to be blamed for a lot regarding his Middle East policy – but certainly not for not standing firm enough to the Saudis and their allies. The author is certainly right for blaming Israel as “free riders” of US foreign policy. Bashar al Assad as creator of IS is really odd, that’s a Saudi-US heritage of spreading Wahabism, supporting jihadists since the 1980s in Afghanistan, creating chaos in Middle Eastern countries by invasions in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya.

cp16 Saudische Luftangriffe / Saudi air raids

22.4.2016 – Hussain Albukhaiti (A K PH)

5 #KSA CO strikes on Almetoon &1strike on Alshaaf n Aljawof

21.4.2016 – Living in Yemen on the Edge (A K PH)

War planes over ‪#‎Sanaá. Sad, to say the least

20.4.2016 – Hassain Albukhaiti (A K PH9

-Woke up on the sound of #Saudi #UAE led CO jets in #Sanaa sky -3 strikes on Nehim -intense jets present in #Taiz coastline,Marib & Aljawof

20.4.2016 – The Talking of the Soul (A K)

April 20 2015
Not even a month after the Saudi led coalition started its infamous campaign of daily-deadly-massacring airstrikes on Yemen, the city of Sanaá had to witness the biggest explosion ever felt on our skin.
There have been multiple other terrible days and nights for almost 400 days now.
But of April 20 we all have memories. Each one has been affected.
Even those not in Faj Attan – the mountain targeted – felt the explosion and the shock wave up to 5 kms away. The whole city and suburbs suffered extensively.
Leaving aside which type of bomb had been used, one year on, there is a simple need to honour the 84 dead (or more?) of that day and the 495 injured.

We all have lost someone or are connected to the injured, the displaced, the sick ever since. Our walls still show scars dated April 20, 2015.
Inside, we are all sick and scarred and something has definitely died that day.
There will never be a good enough explanation for having bombed us this way, there will never be enough justice rendered. Whatever happens.

We shall never forget any one, even those unnamed bodies.
Below is a list we are leaving in Arabic: transliteration would alter what we want to be Yemeni, forever. The pain and the mourning.
84 and 495 will never be forgotten.
The list ( source ) dates April 22 2015.
Some injured passed away soon after, some bodies have never been found and could not be added. But this is the imprecision of wars: they never are accurate.

cp17 Kriegsereignisse / Theater of War

22.4.2016 – Hussain Albukhaiti (A K PH)

Failed #Saudi #UAE backed forces attempt2advance in Albayda prov central #Yemen

20.4.2016 – Hussain Albukhaiti (A K PH)

Another ceasefire breached by #Saudi #UAE CO 2 strikes on Nehim east #Sanaa #Yemen Grads rockets attack on #Houthi position Esaylan N Shabwa

cp18 Sonstiges / Other

November 25 Project

Photos: Faces of Yemen

If you have seen the photographs above and visited the Al Mamoon page, you have had a glimpse of a breathtaking, ancient, hospitable country where time has stood still while the world moves on into an era of technology that leaves history behind to make way for an industrialized society that is losing its human soul.
There is another side to Yemen, a "modern day" side where some people enjoy the "luxuries" of "wealth" distributed by the ISRAELI/UK/US wars and war arsenal industry corporations and their Saudi oil associates - the creators of corruption in governments and religious factions where ever deemed necessary to destabilize a country to protect the oil and war arsenal investors industry from losing its grip on profits for power and power for profits. and

22.4.2016 – The Talking of the Soul

VOICES FOR CHANGENovember 25 project – has been on the net, and Facebook, for the past 6 years with just one aim: spreading awareness and drawing people together in the name of PEACE.

No political, religious, moral affiliation, just peace.

Voices for Change has always paid special attention and been close to Yemen (Faces of Yemen ), recognising the pure soul of the country and denouncing the war mongers’ agenda played on the skin of the Yemeni people. There have been rivers of blood running with little coverage from the media. The world turnt its face away, especially since the war started the night of 26 March 2015 when Yemenis went to bed and woke up to the sound of missiles and bombs from the Saudi-led warplanes. Nothing less than a crime against humanity.

As the founder of Voices for Change, Bob Oort, states:
“[Our project] Is about people, every day people who have lives and when left in peace will return the same with hospitality and kindness. Those committing such crimes on humanity as in Yemen (and everywhere in the world) are demons possessed people if not demons themselves. Wars are not created by people who ask for no more but their needs to live and care for their children.The power obsessed know nothing of Life, they only know about the false wealth within their gold-laced palaces, palaces that do not breathe except on the smell of oil and war arsenal. These are the people who shake hands with their own kind while holding a loaded gun behind their back. They have the means to create World Peace any tick of the clock, but they choose war, murder, genocide and the destruction of anything that is sacred to Life. Their lives are built on the history of dynastic and empirical warfare and enslavement of humans and animals alike.Consciousness is available to anyone who so chooses. It is the way to the heart and soul where the conscience of every man and woman lives. Consciousness is the door to the Conscience – where the keys to Peace and Harmony are kept. That door has no lock, it can be opened by anyone who chooses to do so, no exceptions.´´

Vorige / Previous:

Neue Artikel zum Nachlesen 1-132: / Yemen Press Reader 1-132: oder / or

Dieser Beitrag gibt die Meinung des Autors wieder, nicht notwendigerweise die der Redaktion des Freitag.
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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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