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Can a rift tear apart the Saudi-UAE coalition in Yemen?

Can a rift tear apart the Saudi-UAE coalition in Yemen?”

The suicide bomber struck in Aden's northern Dar Saad neighbourhood a day after the UAE raised the stakes by carrying out air strikes against government forces in southern Yemen.

The separatists and the Yemeni government forces are both part of the Arab coalition battling the Iran-backed Houthi rebels, who took over most of Yemen's cities in 2014.

Hadi also asked for all air strikes against Yemeni government forces to be halted.

But the separatists broke with the government this month, accused it of ties to Islamists and seized its temporary base of Aden on August 10. Hadi's forces withdrew from Aden after the air strikes, which killed at least 45 soldiers.

Yemen's SABA news agency cited the country's human rights ministry as saying that the killings took place during home raids conducted by armed militias affiliated with the Southern Transitional Council (STC), a secessionist movement.

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1 August: A missile attack claimed by the Houthis kills dozens of Security Belt Forces (SBF) officers at a military parade near Aden, including a leading SBF commander, Brigadier General Munir "Abu al-Yamama" al-Yafee.

Yemen's government condemned the strikes which it said had killed and wounded more than 300 of its forces and a number of civilians. Fighting breaks out between SBF fighters and presidential guards at the palace entrance.

But Yemen's government hit back on Friday over what it said were "false justifications given by the UAE to cover up its blatant targeting of the national army's forces".

The Yemeni government is furious over UAE airstrikes, and that anger is spreading into Saudi Arabia, where there are growing calls on social media to "expel" the UAE from the invasion coalition for what people are describing as a "betrayal". "May victory be for the South", said a fighter backing STC. The conflict entered an active phase when a Saudi-led coalition invaded the country at the request of President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi. The intensifying conflict between Abu Dhabi and the government undermines the coalition, and poses a headache for regional powerhouse Saudi Arabia, which is focused on fighting the Huthis who are aligned with Riyadh's arch foe Iran.

Fighting over the past four years has already claimed tens of thousands of lives and sparked what the United Nations calls the world's worst humanitarian crisis.



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