This reading seeks to reveal the consequences that accompanied the experience of the transitional phase of the unity project between Yemen and the south, emanating from the announcement of the draft agreement on the unity state project on May 22, 1990, and the experience of the transitional phase in the Yemeni case between some Yemeni leaders and the Southern Transitional Council, emanating from the Riyadh Agreement signed on November 5, 2019, and the reading agreed on the comparison approach and the analytical approach between events and their results, trying to monitor the risks and challenges that accompanied those two experiences, and the link between the internal and external determinants that It affected the implementation of the mechanisms of those two experiments.
The reading has reached a general conclusion that these two experiments failed miserably, starting from the moment they were signed and passing through the first steps implemented and reaching the end of their resounding fall, and the reading showed that the mechanisms and steps followed in the march and events of those two stages are quite similar in all their details and political, military, economic and religious fields. The reading reached a number of important findings and recommendations.
Keywords: Transitional Phase - Unity State Project Agreement - Covenant and Agreement Agreement - Riyadh Agreement.
Since the signing of the unity project on May 22, the South and its people have witnessed two transitional experiences that were the result of a diplomatic and political move to create dialogues and discussions between the political leaders in Yemen and the South, with the aim of reaching an agreement that ends the state of conflict between the two peoples, so the first transitional experience included in the document of the draft declaration of Yemeni unity signed on May 22, 1990, and the transitional phase was one of the foundations to ensure the continuity of the terms of that document, and the second experience was the Riyadh document signed in History... In order to link these events to their historical contexts to know the political backgrounds of these agreements that result in a consensual transitional phase between the two parties to the conflict in Yemen. Those initiatives ended in failure.
The main question in this reading is what is the secret of the failure of the transitional phase between the two parties to the conflict in Yemen? Other questions arise from this question.
- Is the root of the conflict in Yemen generated by the terms of these initiatives and the agreement?!
- Are the mined provisions of the transitional period the danger that continues to ignite the fire?
- Why do the terms of the transitional implementation mechanisms remain so vague and sometimes so secret?
- Why four years for each stage to end in a bloody military conflict between the two parties to the conflict?!
- After four years of the transitional period specified in the Riyadh Agreement between the Southern Transitional Council and some elements of Yemeni legitimacy, are there indications of a military conflict coming?
All these questions are trying to answer this analytical reading in order to reveal the fate of the current transitional period, which came at an exceptional stage to manage the war and conflict with the Houthi militias.
This reading contained two axes:
- The first axis: the transitional phase of the Yemeni unity project (90 AD - 94 AD)
- The second topic: the transitional phase of the Yemeni case alliances 5 November 2019 - 5 November 2023
- Conclusions and recommendations
- Sources and references
The first topic: the transitional phase of the draft declaration of the state of unity (May 22, 1990 AD - May 21, 94 AD)
The depth of the dispute between the two republics, the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen with an eastern orientation, and the Yemen Arab Republic with a western orientation, generated a number of intellectual, cultural, social and military conflicts between the two peoples and regimes, but the transformations, rifts and many internal and external factors pushed the leadership of the people of the south towards a unity project without study, planning, foundations and principles of participation and taking into account the specificities of the two peoples. Consulting and benefiting from Arab, regional and international experiences and revealing weaknesses, failures and other plans.
In that non-national document, it set a condition for a transitional phase that was set at three years, which is the first step towards the unknown path, as this transition period for the system of two states with different ideologies makes this specific period of time for transition irrational, so how can senior politicians and local, regional and international observers accept it.
This foundation has a great source of failure of the unity project shattered hopes for peace, and the construction of a project is an orphan experience in an Arab region full of bloody conflicts, backwardness and ignorance, in the first attempts to move in civil institutions emerged disagreement and the development of conflict, every step walking towards the transition emerged conflict and disagreement until this disagreement turned in institutional work into confrontations, assassinations, treason, atonement and defamation. The fruit of this transitional phase of its early years was a bloody hemorrhage, which lasted for four years, especially since the formula, put forward by the leadership of the two regimes, called for building a modern national state, foremost of which was the unification of military and security forces and the prevention of any tribal, military and religious militias that might threaten the unity project.
After a bloody conflict that lasted four years, the years of the transitional period, which began on May 22, 1990 and ended on May 21, 1994, four years were not enough to merge the institutions of two different and conflicting regimes for decades, but it is a struggle that extends for thousands of years.
v the main motives for the failure of the unity state declaration project
- The absence of scientific foundations and mechanisms for the establishment of the unity state project
- Transcending the (political, military, religious and social) heritage of the two countries
- Bypassing previous unity agreements signed between the two states
- The difference in national education for the concepts of unity between the two peoples
- The fragility of the institutional structure of the unity state project
- The control of terrorist organizations in political decision-making
- The control of the tribal system over political decision-making
- Weak democracy, political pluralism and absence of civil society organizations
v Crises and challenges that accompanied the transitional period
Here we will list the most prominent crises that manifested themselves in the transitional phase, which were as follows:
First: The most prominent political and legislative crises
- The crisis over the articles of the constitution of the unity project
- The crisis under the electoral law
- The crisis within the legislative branch
- The crisis within the framework of integrating diplomatic representation
- The crisis in the framework of the integration of military institutions
- The crisis within the framework of presidential power
Second: The most prominent security and military crises
- The evolution of the security crisis (political assassinations)
- The evolution of the political crisis and the retreat of Vice President Al-Beidh
- The height of the political and military conflict
- Document of Covenant and Agreement (Kingdom of Jordan)
- Failure of Salalah reconciliation (Oman)
- Escalation of the military crisis
- Declaration of war on the South
- Announcing the famous takfiri fatwa against the people of the South
- Occupation of the South and Imposition of Unity by Force
Third: The most prominent economic crises
- The crisis within the framework of the integration of economic institutions
- The crisis within the framework of the merger of finance and banking
The implications and challenges of the failure of the transitional phase of the draft declaration of a unified state:
- Yemeni terrorist and military organizations carried out guerrilla warfare, as they carried out a number of assassinations in most governorates, targeting southern political, military and civilian leaders, where the number of victims of terrorist operations during two years reached (156) martyrs.
- All these Yemeni forces came to intellectual and religious terrorism using carrot, intimidation, buying loyalties and takfir accusing of atheism, as the mosques of northern Yemen all called for takfir and incitement against the leaders of the people of the south, and these rumors became the daily media material for the poles of the Sana'a regime with their various party affiliations.
- Before proceeding with the adoption of the constitution, terrorist and tribal organizations escalated acts of violence and political assassinations in Yemen, with the transitional period, and before the first elections were held in the era of unity, and in light of the multiplicity of parties, riots, sabotage and political assassinations occurred, multiple during this period, as the number of cases of political assassinations during the years "1991 AD 1992
- The agreement of the covenant and the agreement between the two parties represented the only way out of the crisis and war, and its first demands were to combat and prosecute the terrorist gangs that obstructed the draft steps of the transitional phase and complicated the crisis to what it reached, but this was the subject of objection to all Yemeni forces, which made them describe that document as a document of treachery and betrayal.
- The failure and obstruction of the implementation of the document of the covenant, agreement and objection Amman Initiative for National Reconciliation the Sana'a regime began to implement its plan against the main unity party, after the civil, military, political, economic and legislative leaders of the people of the south decided to return to retreat in Aden because their lives and fate are heading towards the unknown.
- The Sana'a regime's betrayal of the document of "Yemeni unity" and its violation of the document of the centrist political solution in 93 AD, the document of "covenant and agreement" signed under the auspices of it.
- Declaration of war on the south, where Saleh announced in a public speech in the seventy square in the capital, Sana'a, on 27/4/1994, war on the document of the covenant and the agreement, making the south a permissible ground for his forces in order to occupy it by military force, and the declaration of war was followed by a number of republican decisions, including:
- Taking a number of unilateral decisions against the unit's partner, 1- The decision to declare a state of emergency on 5/5/1994, and the general mobilization of the fighting, 2- The decision to revoke the constitutional legitimacy of Ali Salem Al-Beidh and then Haidar Al-Attas by a decision of the Presidency Council taken unilaterally by its three northern members and in the absence of the representatives of the south on Monday.
- Renewing the issuance of the public takfiri fatwa against the people of the South, land and human beings, calling on the Mujahideen to invade and open the infidel and atheist country for the sake of supporting religion and Sharia, invading and occupying the South by military force and imposing unity with tanks on the people of the South
The second topic: the transitional phase of the Yemeni case coalitions 5 November 2019 - 5 November 2023
It is an agreement signed between the (legitimate) Yemeni government and the Southern Transitional Council on 5/9/2019, under the auspices of the countries of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and aims to end the conflict between the two parties that represent the legitimacy in Yemen, for the purpose of unifying efforts under the banner of the Arab coalition to confront the Houthi groups, and this agreement came after the conflict that took place between them at the beginning of August 2019.
The agreement included key items, in addition to an annex for political and economic arrangements, an annex for military arrangements and another for security arrangements, and under this agreement, the legitimate government and the Transitional Council committed to a number of key principles to be implemented during the coming period, foremost of which are:
- Activating the role of all state authorities and institutions in accordance with political and economic arrangements.
- Reorganization of the military forces under the command of the Ministry of Defense in accordance with military arrangements.
- Reorganization of the security forces under the command of the Ministry of the Interior in accordance with security arrangements.
The process of implementing these items is subject to the supervision of a Saudi committee formed for this purpose, and under the Riyadh Agreement, Saudi Arabia presents itself as a guarantor of the formation of a more effective and participatory Yemeni government, as the Riyadh Agreement came as a result of intensive efforts made by Saudi Arabia and the UAE with the aim of uniting the ranks of the components of legitimacy and the transitional to eliminate the Houthi militias and resume development processes.
The signing of the Riyadh Agreement and consultations and their implementation plan in November led to great satisfaction among the conflicting parties, and everyone felt satisfied that political settlement because it spared them armed conflict and contributed to launching the path of stability and development, with promises from regional and international donors to provide aid for development. Unfortunately, the path to stabilization has been fraught with obstacles, and the weak implementation of the Riyadh Agreement and the results of the Riyadh consultations backed by the Gulf Cooperation Council have turned the Model Political Agreement into a protracted crisis.
There is no doubt that the reason for the protracted crisis between the two parties to legitimacy is partly due to the intransigence of the Yemeni Muslim Brotherhood, which obstructs the implementation of peace and the beneficiaries of the conflict, whether they are warlords or arms producers, to reconsider their positions given the destruction they are inflicting on Yemen, and in order to mitigate the risk of the conflict spreading to other countries in the region. This cannot be achieved without getting non-Yemeni actors to end their proxy conflict in Yemen. Therefore, the Security Council must make a fully concerted effort to nurture regional and international powers to agree on a peace process that will form the cornerstone of inclusive negotiations between Yemenis. It must bring Yemenis back to the negotiating table, without any exceptions or preconditions, and hold them responsible for negotiating a just and equitable peace agreement for all with the necessary guarantees and incentives from international and regional powers. At the same time, Yemeni obstructionists of the peace process must understand the consequences of their actions.
The Riyadh Agreement resulted in the Yemeni-Yemeni consultations in Riyadh, a Gulf initiative signed on March 29 - April 7, 2022 AD between the legitimate and transitional parties to the conflict, and that initiative was led by the Gulf Cooperation Council countries between the two parties that signed the Riyadh document, which is a continuation of the terms of the Riyadh Agreement, which aims to end the conflict between the two parties, which represent legitimacy in Yemen, for the purpose of unifying efforts under the banner of the Arab coalition to confront the Houthi groups, and this agreement came after the conflict that took place between them.
First: Strengthening State Institutions and Unity
Second: The priority of a political solution
Third: Completing the implementation of the Riyadh Agreement
Fourth: Maintaining internal security and combating terrorism
Fifth: Economic recovery, stability, governance of the state's financial resources and management of the country's natural resources:
Sixth: Developing transparency, accountability and anti-corruption mechanisms
Seventh: Addressing the Social Effects of War
Eighth: The strategic partnership between Yemen and the Gulf Cooperation Council
Ninth: Preserving Arab National Security
Tenth: Partnership with the international community
Eleventh: Continuation of Yemeni-Yemeni consultations
The signs of failure of the Riyadh Agreement between the legitimate government and the transitional are on the horizon, and at the forefront of the reasons leading to failure are those rebellions presented by the Brotherhood; within the legitimate government itself, as the legitimacy consists of several components of conflicting interests based on visions and ideas of different directions, and this matter will lead to a split and crack within the system of the legitimate government, which leads to a hidden ideological conflict within the government, and then the internal conflict that takes place within the structure of the government loses internal stability, This makes them weak and unable to move on the ground to implement the terms of the Riyadh Agreement.
It also generated the 2023 Peace Initiative, which was announced in the Saudi Foreign Ministry's statement that it had invited the Houthi delegation to come to Riyadh to complete discussions and talks "as an extension of the Saudi initiative announced in March 2021" and as a continuation of the meetings and discussions held by the Saudi team headed by Ambassador Mohammed Al Jaber with the participation of the Omani delegation in Sana'a, last April.
The statement added that the call also came "as a continuation of the efforts of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Sultanate of Oman to reach a permanent and continuous comprehensive ceasefire agreement in Yemen and reach a sustainable political solution acceptable to all Yemeni parties."
Themes of this initiative:
- A comprehensive ceasefire under United Nations supervision.
- Depositing taxes and customs revenues for oil derivatives ships from the port of Hodeida in the joint account of the Central Bank of Yemen in Hodeida in accordance with the Stockholm Agreement on Hodeida.
- Opening Sana'a International Airport and initiating consultations between the Yemeni parties to reach a political solution to the Yemeni crisis under the auspices of the United Nations based on the terms of reference of UN Security Council Resolution 2216, the Gulf Initiative and the outcomes of the comprehensive Yemeni national dialogue.
Mohammed Ali al-Houthi, a member of the so-called Supreme Political Council of the coup in Sana'a, revealed the files that will be discussed in the Riyadh negotiations, after the arrival of his group's delegation to the Saudi capital, saying: "The topics that are discussed in the humanitarian file, which is the payment of salaries of Yemeni employees, the opening of airports and ports, the release of all prisoners and detainees, the exit of foreign forces, reconstruction to reach a comprehensive political solution."
Muhammad Ali did not address the military file related to the shooting, especially inside Yemen, or the opening of roads closed by his group between Yemeni provinces.
Reactions of local parties to the initiative
The Southern Transitional Council issued a press statement regarding the Saudi initiative for a solution in Yemen.
The statement read... The Southern Transitional Council renews its position welcoming the Saudi peace initiative announced in March 2021, within the framework of its permanent support for all peace efforts, and the Council appreciates the keenness and efforts of the Arab coalition countries led by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia towards establishing lasting peace and stabilizing the south and Yemen.
The STC takes this opportunity to reaffirm its keenness to achieve an inclusive and sustainable political process that establishes an unconditional dialogue to ensure that all issues are addressed, foremost of which is the recognition of the cause of the people of the south and the development of a special negotiating framework for its resolution as a basis for starting peace efforts, and commitment to the contents of the Riyadh Agreement and the outcomes of the Gulf Cooperation Council consultations.
The Yemeni government welcomed the Saudi initiative, which is the same position expressed by the legitimate government with all calls for peace and at all negotiating stations, in order to alleviate the human suffering of the Yemeni people. She pointed out that this initiative came in response to international efforts aimed at ending the war and human suffering, and is a real test of the desire of the Iran-backed militias for peace, and a test of the effectiveness of the international community calling for an end to the war and the resumption of the political track.
The former Yemeni Foreign Minister, Dr. Abu Bakr al-Qurbi, revealed in a post on X that "the Dhahran South Agreement, which was brokered by the Kingdom on April 4, 2016 between the two parties to the Yemeni conflict" will be the basis of the current negotiations.
He pointed out that "the Dhahran South Agreement dealt with military arrangements that did not include ending the conflict, and this agreement will be the basis of the current negotiations and with the presence of the UN envoy close to it as a preparation for negotiations for a comprehensive solution."
With this information, it is confirmed that the ongoing negotiations are between the Yemeni parties, and are being carried out under Saudi auspices and Omani mediation, in order to complement the Dhahran South Agreement, in the hope of entering into negotiations for comprehensive peace.
The outgoing Yemeni House of Representatives announced that peace options will only be through the agreed terms of reference, represented in the Gulf initiative and its executive mechanism, the outcomes of the national dialogue and UN Security Council resolutions, especially Resolution 2216, and that any solutions that contradict these references will not be accepted popularly and officially.
v Motives for the failure of the Yemeni case coalitions
- Failure to strengthen state institutions and unity
- Lack of priority for a political solution and non-recognition of the issue of the people of the South
- Failure to complete the implementation of the Riyadh Agreement
- Supporting terrorist organizations before the partners of the interim government and not maintaining internal security and combating terrorism.
- Failure to implement the provisions of the economic aspect in order to recover, support economic stability, governance of the state's financial resources and management of the country's natural resources.
- Failure to develop transparency, accountability and anti-corruption mechanisms.
- Not addressing the social effects of the war in the south and improving the standard of living of citizens in the south in general and the capital Aden in particular.
- The lack of credibility of the Yemeni parties to confront the Houthi militias.
v Crises and challenges in the transitional phase in the temporary Yemeni situation
Here we will list the most prominent crises that manifested themselves in the transitional phase, which were as follows:
- Artificial political crises
- Crises in the field of services
- Crises in the field of economic and development
- Crises in the financial and banking field
- Security crises
- Social crises
- Cultural and moral crises
- Military crises
v Implications and challenges of the failure of the transitional phase of the Yemeni situation
- Supporting and encouraging Yemeni religious and military terrorist organizations by carrying out guerrilla warfare, as they carried out a number of assassinations, bombings and confrontations throughout the years of war with the Houthi forces and carried out a number of terrorist activities in most of the southern governorates, leaving thousands of southern political, military and civilian leaders, where the number of victims of terrorist operations reached thousands of martyrs and wounded, and a number of thousands of service and revenue institutions were destroyed.
9- The validity of the takfiri fatwa against the people of the south, land and human beings, for them it is the land of conquest and the return of the prodigal son to his father's house., using the slogan of religion as a starting point for carrot, intimidation, buying loyalties and atonement, accusing of atheism, as the mosques of Yemen in the north all call for atonement and incitement against the leaders of the people of the south, and these rumors have become the daily media material for the poles of the Sana'a regime with their various party affiliations.
- Before implementing the terms of the Riyadh Political and Military Agreement
- The Riyadh agreement was the common denominator between the two parties in order to confront the Houthi militias, but the Yemeni forces consider this not an important goal for them.
- The presidency of the interim council is working on taking a number of unilateral decisions against the Southern Transitional Council, and this reminds us of the unilateral decisions taken by the members of the Presidency Council in Sana'a against the people of the south and its leadership in the summer of the 94 war, most notably - the decision to declare a state of emergency, the decision to mobilize the general fighting, 2- and the decision to drop the constitutional legitimacy of Ali Salem al-Beidh and then Haider al-Attas by a decision of the Presidency Council taken unilaterally by its three northern members and in the absence of representatives of the south on Monday.
Conclusions and recommendations:
- First: Results:
From the previous reading, we found the following:
- The two transitional phases - between the parties to the conflict in Yemen and the south, the first phase in 94 AD, which was supervised by the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, which culminated in the document of the Covenant and Agreement, and the second phase in 2019, which is supervised by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, were accompanied by failure from the moment they were signed, the first ended in a bloody and destructive war for an entire people for a period of more than three decades, and the second agreement is only a result of that document and agreement, and the second indicators of its failure emerged from the moment it was signed, and that the first experience is evidence that this stage It is doomed to fail miserably; it even establishes wars and bloody conflicts to come between the signatories; it is a southern Yemeni conflict par excellence.
- The uncertainty and secrecy that accompanied the signing of those two agreements and the resulting transitional years reflected many obstacles, which made the progress towards the implementation of their provisions stalled.
- These two agreements were drafted in turbulent local, regional and international political circumstances and did not receive sufficient attention from regional and international observers, and these agreements always took into account the interests supervising them, leaving the conflicting parties in the margins, which indicates that these initiatives and agreements serve the supervising party first.
- Revealing the false awareness of the Arab diplomatic mind about the concept of partnership with the Yemeni forces of various affiliations, as both experiments failed from their first moment, and the other became thinking of the mentality of the invader and the occupier, and this is confirmed by events and data in the field.
- Providing political awareness to all segments of the southern people at home and abroad in order to remove the false awareness and distortions that accompanied the two transitional phases.
- Uncover all the conspiracies that accompanied the transitional phases of local, Arab and international opinion.
- Provide historical, legal and social studies on these failures of these two experiments; In order to uncover the facts and communicate their results to Arab and international political decision-makers.
- Continuous follow-up by diplomacy and the southern negotiator of all events, agreements, decisions and treaties, which are a major reference for defending the just Cau Declaring a state of emergency to manage the crisis in the south and benefit from previous experiences in crisis management.e of our people.
- Lack of trust in all Yemeni forces because they are accustomed to treachery, betrayal and breaking covenants and covenants.
- Full political, military and public readiness to face the crises as well as thwarting the Yemeni plans planned by Yemenis in Sana'a, Aden and Riyadh.
- Sources and references:
1- The failure of the unity project between the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen and the Arab Republic (an introduction to understanding the issue of the people of the south and their peaceful movement), Dr. Fadl Abdullah Al-Rubaie, Publications of the Center for Public Opinion Studies and Social Research (Madar), 1st Edition, Aden, 2012.
2- A scientific paper entitled (Yemeni unity has failed and there are two directions to address the southern issue) 2012.
- A research paper presented by (Dr. Muhammad Ali Al-Saqqaf) entitled The Roots of the Southern Issue, Al Jazeera Forum for Studies. It dealt with the stages of development of the southern issue and the legitimacy of the unity document, addressing some legal issues that invalidate the unity project.
- Documents, memoranda and documents of the peaceful revolutionary movement forces since 2007-20
- Southern issue documents (Southern issue team in the Yemeni dialogue 2014 since 2011-2014 AD)
- Documents and memoranda of the Southern Transitional Council since 2017-2022
- Memoirs (Ambassador Qassem Askar Gibran 2022) entitled "The story of the life and history of an unpublished homeland.