Yemen's STC, other factions sign 'national charter' calling for partition

Yemen's STC, other factions sign 'national charter' calling for partition
Yemeni separatists have called for the establishment of a federal state in the war-torn country's south.
3 min read
09 May, 2023
The STC seeks cessation from northern Yemen and a return to the pre-1990 status quo [Getty/archive]

Yemen’s Southern Transitional Council (STC) on Monday renewed its endeavour for the partition of the war-torn country at the end of a four-day consultative meeting, as it reshaped its leadership.

Political factions from the south participating in the meeting signed a "national charter" in Aden, the most notable clause of which included "the restoration of the state of the south with its political and geographical borders according to what was before May 22, 1990," in reference to the unification of the former states of North Yemen and South Yemen.

Any solutions that do not take into account the south’s "full sovereignty" must be decided by the region’s people, the charter says.

It also stipulates the adoption of a federal state in southern Yemen.

The meeting’s participants stressed on an "international settlement" to determine south Yemen's separation from the Yemeni state, where negotiations between them and representatives of northern Yemen take place in another country.

STC President Aidaros Al-Zubidi issued a number of decisions which included the restructuring of the council’s presidency, as well as the establishment of major bodies within the council. They included the Supreme Executive Leadership and the Council of Advisors. 

Major Generals Abdulrahman Al-Muhrammi, Faraj Al-Bahsani, and Ahmed Saeed bin Break were appointed as vice-chairmen, and an additional 23 others were appointed to the presidency council.

Other factions in southern Yemen voiced opposition to the meeting and the national charter that was announced.

Established in 2017 and backed by the United Arab Emirates, the STC has clashed with the internationally recognised Yemeni government as well as radical Islamist groups such as Al-Qaeda. Its forces currently control several provinces.

It has sought cessation from northern Yemen, which is mostly under the control of the Houthi rebels, which in turn are involved in negotiations with Saudi Arabia to end the Yemen conflict.

The historic China-brokered deal between Saudi Arabia and Iran in March have raised optimism that reverberations may also be felt throughout Yemen, which has been a critical point throughout the two countries’ bitter rivalry.

Analysts have warned against freezing out the STC from any peace talks, and the council itself has previously voiced concerns it was not involved in talks.

The Yemen war has killed hundreds of thousands of people, displaced millions more, and has battered the economy. It has left millions of people relying on humanitarian aid, in a country already considered one of the world’s poorest.