Tens of thousands of people rallied in support of UAE-backed separatists in Aden on Thursday, August 15, after separatists had seized control of Aden from the internationally recognized Yemeni government of Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi as of Saturday, August 10. The demonstrators reportedly called for the Saudi-led coalition and the international community to recognize southern Yemen's right to self-determination and denounced the perceived mismanagement of Yemeni President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi's administration.
Similar demonstrations are possible in Aden over the near term amid heightened Saudi-UAE tensions over the separatists' recent seizure of the city.
Yemen is engaged in a complex and deadly conflict, ongoing since Houthi rebels entered into a civil war with the Yemeni government, supported by a Saudi-led coalition, in 2015. The Saudi-led coalition has carried out thousands of airstrikes in Yemen since its intervention began. Hundreds of Yemeni civilians have been killed in the strikes, which have hit schools, hospitals, and markets, in addition to Houthi militant positions and personnel. In total, more than 10,000 Yemenis have died in the fighting and some 3 million have been displaced.
Due to poor security conditions, many Western governments advise their citizens against all travel to Yemen. Travel to the country should only be considered with proper security protocols in place. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to travel.
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