Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Houthis Confuse Social Fabric by Buying Off Tribes with People’s Money | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
Select Page
Media ID: 55378404

A tribal fighter loyal to Yemen’s government squats on the side on a slope at the frontline of fighting against Houthi militants in the central province of Ma’rib. Reuters

Jeddah- Insurgents in Yemen plan to buy the loyalty of as many tribal sheikhs as possible, using the money of the people in which they have taken by force after transferring the revenues of the areas under their control to what they call the “war effort.”

Houthi and Saleh militias are working on fragmenting the national and social fabric and have prioritized changing the sheikhs and rebelling against them, especially in the outskirts of Sana’a, according to Yemeni sources.

Sources stressed that the coup militias will issue resolutions that convict these sheikhs of treason in order to get fighters to continue their coup against the legitimate authority.

The coup militia has earlier established the so-called “Tribal Cohesion Council” and appointed a loyal sheikh as its president, taking advantage of the policy of some countries that support terrorism.

Houthis have forced the tribal heads in Yemen to choose between two options, either being loyal to them or ousting the unqualified sheikh and appointing another one to fill his place.

“Tribes in Yemen are the basis of the social component, and any political force can not but to activate its presence in the tribes and receive their consent, which is what Houthis are doing,” Mohammed bin Naji al-Shayef, Leader of the Bakil tribe told Asharq al-Awsat.

Shayef attributed Houthis’ penetration in the Yemeni tribes and their keenness to deepen their relations with their sheikhs to the aim of controlling their children intellectually and militarily, pointing out that the Yemeni tribes constitute the largest proportion of society and gaining their consent leads to achieving many political and military goals.

He expected the failure of the council that was established by Houthis because he believes that the tribal councils can not agree or continue since each tribe has its own independent council.

Speeding up the failure of this council could be done by the legitimate government and the coalition forces that can communicate with the leaders of the Yemeni tribes and activate their roles, he added.

Shayef confirmed that tribes in Tawq Sana’a are considered a major target for Houthi militias to keep the city and the rest of the provinces under their control.

Taking care of them, forming alliance with them and gaining support of the poor ones in these tribes by giving them money and appointing them in major posts in their institutions are the means taken by the coupists Yemen to earn their loyalty, achieve their goals through them, and adding as many fighters as possible to their ranks.