Yemen. Since 2014, Yemen has been plagued by a bloody conflict between Iranian-backed Shiite Hire rebels and President Abd Rabbuh Mansur al-Hadi’s forces, which is being helped by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, among others.
In a summary of the events in Yemen, the UN panel of experts stated at the beginning of the year: “After almost three years of conflict, Yemen has virtually ceased to exist as a state.” It was also noted that “instead of a single state, there are warring ministries, and no single party has the political support or military strength to reunite the country or achieve victory on the battlefield.” Amnesty International’s annual report for 2017 was also bleak, calling the Yemen conflict “the world’s worst humanitarian crisis”. According to Countryaah.com, Sanaa is the capital city of Yemen, a country located in Western Asia. The head of the UN’s humanitarian efforts said in February that more than 22 million people were in need of relief.
In November, UN statistics were presented showing that more than 85,000 Yemeni children have died of starvation since 2015. The same month, 14 million people were said to be starving as a result of the war, and in a statement from the United Nations World Food Program (WFP)) found that ※the hunger crisis in Yemen is the most serious in the world. Millions of people are living on the verge of starvation and the situation is getting worse every day. § According to UNICEF, a Yemeni child dies every ten minutes due to illness and malnutrition.
In addition, during the year, the conflict and civilian suffering were escalated by an offensive and blockade against the important port city of al-Hudayda, which is the only lifeline for the people living under the Huthi rebels, and thousands of people were forced to flee the city. However, a brightening came at the end of the year when it was decided to hold UN-led Yemen talks in Stockholm in December, at the same time as the US Senate decided to start phasing out US support for the Saudi-led alliance.
Possibly the peace plan for Yemen that UN Special Envoy Martin Griffiths produced in June could be the basis for the Yemeni talks in Sweden in December. According to this peace plan, the Huthirebels would give up their ballistic robots in exchange for the Saudi-led coalition ending its bombers. Yemen would then eventually have a transitional government where “political groups should be adequately represented”. Perhaps the most important decisions taken during these conversations, which took place at Johannesberg Castle outside Rimbo, were prisoner exchanges and an armistice in the port city of al-Hudayda.
Yemen – Sana
Sana, Ṣana˙āū, capital of Yemen; 1. 9 million residents (2012). Sana is a regional trading center with cotton spinning and textile industry as well as a university (founded in 1970) and an Islamic university. The city also has an international airport and connects to al-Hudayda through a modern all-weather route.
Cityscape and architecture
Sana is one of the architecturally strangest and most interesting cities in the Islamic world. The city was probably founded in the second millennium BC. and belonged to the kingdom of Sheba. The name Sana is Sabaean and means “well fortified”. In pre-Islamic times, the legendary palace Ghumdan was built in Sana. However, the period has been incompletely explored and no excavations have yet been made where the palace is believed to have been.
The city was Islamized under the Persian governor Badhan who turned to Islam 628. Already during Muhammad’s life, one of the oldest mosques in the Islamic world was built in the gardens of Ghumdan. The mosque has been rebuilt in recent centuries and today has a classic shape with square circular courtyard with deep arcades and a hypostyle prayer hall in five ships.
The old town of Sana is surrounded by a partially demolished city wall and is today separated from the newer neighborhoods by a dried-up riverbed. In the center of the old town (medina) lies the large marketplace (suq ) surrounded by centuries-old caravans (samsara), which were often built on several floors around an open courtyard. From the suq, business streets branch with open workshops and small shops. Most striking, however, is Medina’s vast residential neighborhoods with up to nine floors of high-rise residential buildings. The oldest preserved houses are from the 18th century, but the type of building can be documented to pre-Christian times and in its present form has medieval traditions.
The houses, which are built along narrow streets, form a unique architectural whole. The building material is generally stone in the ground floor and in the upper floors sun-dried brick and clay. The houses are decorated with a powerful white painted decor, especially around windows and other architecturally accentuated lots. The windows have in the past been covered by thin sheets of alabaster, which today are often replaced by colored glass. In the family houses there is a strict division of floors from storage and storage in the lowest floors, family rooms (divan) and kitchens in the upper floors to the men’s meeting room (mafraj) in the top floor of the house. Common gardens (waqf) are often located between the densely built residential neighborhoods for household vegetable crops.
SANA’s old city center has been declared by UNESCO to belong to the World Cultural Heritage. However, the difficulties in preserving the city center are great, especially regarding maintenance, sewerage and communications. In addition, it is threatened with decay when residents leave the old family homes to relocate to the new districts, and the preservation requires major international efforts in cooperation with the Yemeni authorities.