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Saudi Arabia losing influence in Yemen

Saudi Arabia once enjoyed unrivalled influence in Yemen, but the transition of power and breakdown of state have allowed other foreign powers, particularly Qatar and Iran, to get a stake in Yemeni affairs.
Army and police officers sit on the ground during a protest to denounce fuel prices hikes in Sanaa August 4, 2014. Yemen raised fuel prices last week, oil officials told Reuters, as the impoverished country tries to cut energy subsidies to ease the burden on its budget deficit. REUTERS/Khaled Abdullah (YEMEN - Tags: POLITICS CIVIL UNREST ENERGY MILITARY) - RTR415WW
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Saudi Arabia is going through a pivotal phase of redrawing its alliances in the region, including in Yemen, where it seems to have lost its customary ability to understand the progression of developments on the ground. In the past, Saudi Arabia was the maker of events and heroes, who performed their Riyadh-scripted roles on the familiar Yemeni stage.

The list of forces with influence in Yemen has changed a lot after 2011, and in parallel, so did Saudi alliances on the internal Yemeni scene, where Riyadh’s influence was the greatest. These changes in alliances remain unclear and indiscernible, for they continue to be modified by Riyadh, pursuant to ongoing developments in Sanaa.

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