Hundreds of Yemenis demonstrated, on Saturday, in the governorate of Socotra Archipelago (southeast), denouncing normalization with Israel and rejecting the “Southern Transitional Council” control of the island.
Participants in the demonstration, called by prominent figures in the governorate, stated that “hundreds of citizens demonstrated in the center of Nojd, south of Socotra, waving Yemeni flags and pictures of President Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi.”
They also raised banners reading “Palestine is our first cause, no to normalization with the Zionists,” “our demand for the return of the state’s civil, military and security institutions” and “Socotra with the federal state.”
The transitional forces (supported by the UAE) fired bullets and cut off roads between villages, in an attempt to disperse and thwart the demonstration that roamed a number of streets, according to the same sources.
On August 13, the UAE and Israel announced an agreement for full normalization between them, which Bahrain followed in a similar step on September 11.
On Tuesday, the UAE and Bahrain signed the two normalization agreements with Israel at the White House, under American auspices, ignoring the state of anger in Arab popular circles.
The closing statement of the demonstration also affirmed “support for Yemeni legitimacy and the federal state project, and rejecting exclusion, marginalization, and projects for disruption and fragmentation of national cohesion.”
The statement called for “the return of the local authority leadership to the governorate, the extension of state control over all institutions, the end of armed manifestations, and the abolition of camps and points that were established outside the authority of the state.”
The statement called for “controlling entry and exit operations in the governorate according to the law and regulatory regulations, and to accelerate the return of services, disbursement of civil and military salaries, and price controls.”
The same statement also called for “the speedy implementation of the Riyadh Agreement between the government and the Transitional Council.”
On June 19, the Southern Transitional Council took control of Socotra Governorate, after fighting government forces.
The Yemeni government accuses the UAE of supporting the council, to serve Emirati goals, especially in Yemen, but Abu Dhabi usually denies this accusation.
Socotra is the largest archipelago of the same name, consisting of six islands, and it occupies a strategic location in the Indian Ocean, off the coast of the Horn of Africa, near the Gulf of Aden.
For the sixth consecutive year, Yemen is witnessing violent fighting between the government forces that have been supported by the Arab coalition since March 2015, and the Iranian-backed Houthi group, which has controlled several governorates, including the capital, Sanaa, since 2014.