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The UAE still has military ambitions in Yemen despite ‘withdrawal’

The United Arab Emirates seems to be staging a withdrawal from Yemen’s southern city of Aden while increasing its influence elsewhere in the southern provinces.

The United Arab Emirates once again claimed it was withdrawing from Yemen on Oct. 30, pulling its troops from Aden prior to a peace deal signed on Nov. 5, to unify the government of President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi and the Emirati-backed Southern Transitional Council (STC). Yet this represents a pragmatic PR move, considering Abu Dhabi still supports militias elsewhere in the south, as it seeks to gain influence in the country. 

"The handover of Aden to the Saudi and Yemeni forces was carried out responsibly and in accordance with a systematic military strategy and was completed successfully," the UAE Armed Forces Command said in a statement, which would indicate a full drawdown.

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