PLC Chairman Rashad Al-Alimi (Al-Arabiya)

Rashad Al-Alimi's Statements Disturb Yemen's PLC


Sat, 25-02-2023 02:20 PM, Aden

Aden (South24) 

The sword of Damocles has become closer than ever before the Presidential Leadership Council (PLC) in Yemen, after press statements by the PLC Chairman Rashad Al-Alimi, regarding "South Issue", which sparked anger in South Yemen.

Al-Alimi, who has chaired the PLC since last April, told the Saudi newspaper Asharq Al-Awsat on Friday, that "South Issue" is "fair, but talking about it or its solution at this moment may be inappropriate."

In his controversial statements, he added: "Dealing with South Issue must be within the framework of the solutions of the political system, the state content, and the form of the future political system." Immediately, reactions followed, and the Southern Transitional Council (STC) issued a strong statement.

The STC Spokesperson Ali Al-Kathiri stated that they "affirm that the statements of the PLC Chairman are inaccurate and do not indicate the seriousness of the partnership and consensus that emerged from the GCC consultations."

"We affirm that South Issue is the issue of a people, a homeland, an identity, and a state produced by the failure of unity between the People's Democratic Republic of Yemen and the Yemeni Arab Republic, the war of occupation of South in the summer of 1994, and the right of the people of South to their fully sovereign state," the statement added.

The statement stressed that "discussing the issue of South does not accept deportation or postponement, nor will it ever be. Rather, it is clearly defined in the outcomes of the Riyadh consultations, as it was agreed to include the issue of the people of South within the agenda of the negotiations to stop the war to set a negotiating framework for it."

The statement expressed the STC's astonishment at "obstructing the issuance of the decision to form the joint negotiating delegation that was agreed upon." Informed sources told "South24 Center" had previously confirmed the agreement within the PLC to name a joint negotiating delegation, but this delegation has not been officially announced yet.

The statement indicated that the joint delegation "is concerned with negotiating the form of the state, the political system for the transitional period, and the required guarantees," warning that "the delay in implementing the commitments contained in the outcomes of the Riyadh consultations represent dangerous indicators that do not serve the future of the partnership and the political process as a whole."


The head of the STC negotiating delegation Dr. Nasser Al-Khobaji said that "the continued ignoring of South Issue will prompt other options to be taken and the dissolution of partnership with the Yemeni government and the PLC."

The senior politician did not disclose those options, but his statements coincided with a state of alert and military deployment in Aden carried out by the Presidential Storm Forces charged with protecting Al-Alimi and other members of the PLC and the Yemeni government.

Dr. Al-Khobaji also accused Al-Alimi of "obstructing the decision to form the joint negotiating delegation."

The STC Deputy for Foreign Affairs, Anis Al-Sharafi, also accused Al-Alimi of "hijacking decision-making and singled it out after the PLC's formation." Al-Sharafi, who was also a member of the negotiating delegation, likened Al-Alimi's speech to that of the Houthi leader Abdulmalik Al-Houthi after taking over Sanaa.

Women rights activist Rasha Jarhum warned that "underestimating the demands of South and the calls for political dialogue on the issue will lead to new cycles of conflict and open the door to military violence."

Activist Haifaa Al-Maashi considered that Al-Alimi "does not speak with his voice, but with the voice of the one who appointed him as the chairman of the PLC, and this means that the Coalition also sees the matter like him, and here lies the danger," as she put it.

On the other hand, Northern politicians and journalists supported what Al-Alimi said. Journalist Ghamdan Al-Yosifi said that Al-Alimi, whom he described as the President of the Republic, "showed a realistic view of what is related to South Issue, and nothing nullified its entitlement or its realism."

Although he described Al-Alimi's statements as "realistic", the Northern researcher Ali Al-Dahab said that Al-Alimi's statements "on South Issue lack diplomacy", adding: "There is no justification for him to appear with this realism, as the circumstances are not in his interest."

On the other hand, the former Yemeni Foreign Minister, Mustafa Noman, believed that "many internal issues about the future of the country must be raised publicly and discussed rationally, away from bidding and wrestling with windmills."

Earlier today, Rashad Al-Alimi arrived in the Saudi capital city Riyadh, according to the official Saba News Agency, after a tour in Europe that included Belgium and Germany.

It should be noted that Al-Alimi had acknowledged in his press statements that the Yemeni government did not participate in direct consultations between Saudi Arabia and the Houthis through Omani mediation, but he spoke of Saudi assurances that the final solution would be between the government and the Houthis.

Al-Alimi described the Saudi role as "mediation", in light of reports that negotiations between Riyadh and the Iranian-backed Houthis had stalled.

South24 Center

South YemenAdenSTCRashadAl-AlimiPLCHouthisNorth YemenAdenSanaa