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Fresh banknotes spark new economic war in Yemen

The UN-recognized Yemeni government has pumped new banknotes into the country, but the Houthis are banning their circulation in areas under their control, burdening Yemenis and exacerbating problems for the already struggling economy.
A money changer holds bundles of Yemeni currency at an exchange shop in Sanaa, Yemen, June 8, 2016. To match Insight YEMEN-SECURITY/CENBANK  REUTERS/Khaled Abdullah      TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY      - S1AETJAZJWAA

Sanaa resident Abdullah Salami had been trying to buy food with the money in his pocket but without much luck. With no shop willing to accept the banknotes, Salami returned to his family's home empty-handed.

In November 2019, freshly printed banknotes arrived in Aden, headquarters of the UN-recognized government of Yemeni President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi. From there they were pumped onto the market to gradually begin the process of replacing older notes nationwide. While it is not a problem to use the new notes in government-controlled areas, on Dec. 19, the Sanaa-based Houthi government banned their use and exchange in areas under its control.

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