Yemeni governor demands UAE withdraws from oil field
The governor of the southern province of Shabwa, Mohammad Saleh bin Adyo, warned of popular protests by citizens and thousands of employees that have been pushed out of work due to the Emirati contorl of the facility.
In a television interview with the local Hadhramout channel, on Monday, bin Adyo said that the UAE has turned the Balhaf gas facility in Shabwa into a "military barracks, and is refusing to restart the facility for the fifth year in a row."
He added that he had addressed the Saudi government, which leads the coalition, about the need to evacuate the facility and restart work there.
Bin Adyo made an offer to the Emiratis, to provide an alternative place in Shabwa to use as a military camp in exchange of them leaving the oil facility.
“We are a country whose budget depends on gas revenues of 70%, and we are facing public pressure because there are thousands of workers. They were laid off and left without a job," he said.
"Residents will have to demonstrate in front of the facility. This isn’t in Emirati interest but we will not lose anything more than we already have if we protest," he added.
Bin Adyo emphasised that the companies are ready to return to work one month after the evacuation of the facility, while the security forces are fully securing it on land and at sea.
Abu Dhabi has been alone in supporting southern secession, viewing a reborn South Yemen as crucial to its interests in the region.
The UAE has, however, managed to carefully avoid a deeper spat with its close ally Saudi Arabia, which is a firm supporter of a unified Yemeni state.