Why is Yemen at war? | Start Here

let's talk about what's going on in

Yemen the United Nations says it has the

worst humanitarian crisis on the planet

and in the world with all sorts of

problems that is saying something

Yemen went from being the heart of

ancient Arabia to one of the poorest

countries in the Middle East and for the

last five years it's been torn apart by

war local groups on the ground are

fighting each other while a saudi-led

coalition bombs from above and caught in

the fighting are millions of Yemenis

desperately struggling to survive so how

did things get so bad and is there a way

out I'm Sandra Gottman and this is start

here Al Jazeera's brand new show where

we break down all the big stories from

the fast-paced and often confusing world

of news the first thing to know about

the war in Yemen is that there's a lot

of players starting with this man Ali

Abdullah Saleh he was Yemen's president

for 20 years since 1990 this is a man

who once compared ruling over Yemen to

dancing on the heads of snakes

it's no wonder that during the Arab

Spring of 2011 Yemenis rose up against

solid in the hope that things might get

better but they didn't and this is where

the next big player comes in Saudi

Arabia Saudi Arabia is the most

influential member of a club of

countries known as the Gulf Cooperation

Council and it was the GCC that oversaw

negotiations to finally force Saleh out

the GCC's deal helped install a new

government in Yemen and put

vice-president of jabba Mansour Hadi in

charge Yemen continued to suffer under

president Hadi after the Revolution and

the initiatives that had come out of the

Revolution were brokered a Gulf Powers

who simply appeared to return the same

old elites to power so by 2014 some of

Yemen's factions began

to lose patience one of them was the

houthis another major player in this war

now the Houthis are a Shia Muslim

minority from northern Yemen they say

they've been marginalized and often

rebelled against the government and

during the Arab Spring they were very

involved in the uprisings against a

solid but here's the twist the Houthis

and Saleh were both sidelined by the

GCC's plans for Yemen's new government

so the former enemies joined forces the

Houthis together with some of Sally's

allies still in the army took over

Yemen's capital Sanaa in 2014 Hadi fled

to Saudi Arabia and then the Saudis

along with several other countries

formed a coalition to return their man

Hadi to power and Saudi Arabia expressed

three main war aims it wanted to restore

the government of President Adi it

wanted to protect its own southern

border and to prevent Yemen from

fragmenting and it wanted to contain the

perceived growing influence of Iran in

the region we'll come back to Iran in a

second but first we have to talk about

the saudi-led intervention it was a

campaign of relentless airstrikes more

than 19,000 attacks in the last four

years according to the latest reports

Saudi led forces say they've been

targeting the enemy but rights groups

accused the coalition of bombing dozens

of hospitals and schools killing

thousands of yem

Millions which brings us to Yemen's

immense humanitarian crisis in this war

it's not just the fighting that's

causing all the suffering even aid is

being used as a weapon in 2015 the

saudi-led coalition created a land sea

and air barrier around Yemen making it

almost impossible for supplies to get in

or out the Houthis are also blamed for

blocking destroying or taking aid and

Yemenis desperately need it today's only

meal is a plate of plain boiled rice

between the family cholera cases are

spreading fast

doctors are facing a severe shortage of

drugs in a country of 29 million people

the UN says 24 million depend on some

kind of humanitarian help that's nearly

the entire population of Australia more

than 11 million given in need of

humanitarian aid nearly every single

Yemeni child this is rapidly becoming

the world's worst humanitarian disaster

now let's get back to the port because

fighting is still going on but the

dynamics have changed the Houthi and

Saleh Alliance we talked about earlier

broke down in 2017 after they'd fought

the saudi-led forces for three years

in fact sally's switched sides on TV

saying he wanted to talk to the

coalition two days later the Houthis

killed him today the goosies still

control Yemen's capital sana and for now

they have an upper hand in the war but

Saudi Arabia thinks it's because they're

getting help from Iran

now as the biggest Shia power in the


Iran has openly supported the Houthis

but denies backing

militarily but Saudi Arabia and others

insist Iran does have a hand in the

fighting recently Saudi Arabia's oil

facilities were attacked the Houthis say

they did it but the coalition and its

allies aren't buying it it is clear

based on detailed exploitation conducted

by Saudi United States and other

international investigative teams that

the weapons used in the attack were

Iranian produced so when people talk

about Yemen being a proxy war this is

what they mean it's the fact that two

major rivals Saudi Arabia and Iran are

backing opposite sides in a foreign war

so are all the other countries in Saudis

coalition plus allies like the United

States France and the United Kingdom

who've been supplying them with weapons

and logistical support

not to mention all of Yemen's armed

groups including the Houthis

secessionist groups in the South

al-qaeda and ISIL when the war is over

the UN says they could all be liable for

atrocities in Yemen shocked induce

ovulation some shisha people do

constitute they came together so this is

where we're at a stalemate of

finger-pointing and fighting by all of

those different players

despite the UN's many attempts at peace

deals and cease fires

but as with any more experts say

diplomacy will be the only way to put an

end to the nightmare in Yemen


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