Ansar Allah vows to defeat al-Qaeda in Yemen

An Ansar Allah leader talked to As-Safir about internal and external forces leading a counterattack against the Houthis through al-Qaeda.

al-monitor A Shiite Houthi rebel stands guard as he secures a road in Yemen's central province of Ibb, Oct. 22, 2014.  Photo by REUTERS/Khaled Abdullah.

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yemen security, yemen revolution, yemen, houthis, al-qaeda, abed rabbo mansour hadi

Oct 22, 2014

The counterattack on the revolution which was led by Ansar Allah as well as the peace and partnership agreement that was signed, gained its momentum during the past few days. The internal and external forces seemed to have finally reached a common interest, which was to strike the Houthis through the classic dirty tool of terrorism.

One has to simply review some of the recent Saudi statements and the incitement brought by the media affiliated with Saudi Arabia, to see the magnitude of the increasing vengeance against the revolution — which the Houthis say it is for all Yemenis while their enemies believe it to be of Iranian origins.

In an indication of the chaos prevailing over Yemen, al-Qaeda militants attacked the military airport of Um al-Maghreb in Hadhramaut governorate, east of Yemen, near the Saudi border, and “stole the airport’s equipment,” according to local sources.

Hours after the bloody attacks executed by al-Qaeda militants against the Houthis and the Yemeni security forces in several cities and governorates, Mohammed al-Bukhaiti, member of Ansar Allah’s political bureau, told As-Safir: “The movement and its allies are capable of defeating the terrorists and freeing the people from their wickedness.”

As-Safir asked Bukhaiti whether or not these attacks — which included a suicide bombing and resulted in dozens of victims in the past couple of days — would form a coup on the peace and partnership agreement, which was signed last month by all political components, under the auspices of the United Nations and the Yemeni President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi. Bukhaiti said that these attacks reflect internal and external political motives, explaining that the United States and certain regional authorities have had their interests met with al-Qaeda and the corruption forces in Yemen.

This Yemeni political leader's statement reflects a significant challenge and confidence at the same time. Bukhaiti said that six Yemeni governorates were freed from the terrorists’ wickedness: Sanaa, Saada, Amran, Dhamar, al-Jawf and Hijjah. The Yemeni leader deplored the US positions’ agreement with al-Qaeda in Yemen, and the international and regional parties’ claim to be fighting terrorism while supporting the terrorists in Yemen.

He said that al-Qaeda has certain relations with corrupted and religious parties in Yemen, saying that the information they have indicates that an important meeting was held in the district of Rada, on the same day of the popular revolution in Sanaa. This meeting aimed at finding a way to confront the protesters in the Yemeni capital. He noted that during the meeting, it was decided to mobilize the militants toward the capital. These fought the Houthis alongside the defector military leader, Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar, and groups from the Congregation for Reform Party. After they were militarily defeated, they switched to bombs and explosive belts.

Bukhaiti considered the increasing attacks by al-Qaeda to be “a response to the peace and partnership agreement, after the corruption forces began to lose their interests, especially that one of the most important article in the agreement stipulates the formation of a decent and competent government that would be capable of fighting corruption.” He said, “The corruption forces in Yemen are starting to realize that they can no longer operate the way they used to. They are trying to resist the change process as much as possible through the formation of a new government.”

The Ansar Allah leader admitted that the negotiations to form the government are facing certain difficulties. However, he warned, “There is not enough time to make further delays.” Bukhaiti refuted the reports that stated that Ansar Allah are trying to impose their candidates for positions in sovereign ministries in the upcoming “technocrat government.” He considered any promotion of the sort to be completely false, explaining that it was agreed that the sovereign ministries would only be occupied by independent personalities.

On the subject of the armed presence of Ansar Allah in Sanaa, Bukhaiti said that they are the people of Yemen primarily, adding, “We are ready to hand the responsibility of the capital’s security to the state’s authorities after the formation of the partnership government as agreed upon in the peace and partnership agreement.”

Regarding the Saudi stance, the leader from Ansar Allah said: “The danger posed by the extremist groups which are threatening the essence of our society, also threatens both the Saudi government and its people. It is as affected as we are. These groups have previously attacked Saudi soldiers on the borders. Ansar Allah’s presence in Yemen limits these groups’ power, which is a positive thing for both the Yemenis and Saudis.”

When asked about the bloody events in Ibb governorate, and the districts of Radaa and al-Udayn, Bukhaiti said that everyone was well-aware that the governorates of Ibb and Bayda are sites for al-Qaeda, from which they launched terrorist attacks against the capital, Sanaa. “Al-Qaeda had to be confronted in its strongholds and we are capable of achieving this,” he said.

On the subject of the situation in al-Udayn, where al-Qaeda took control and placed its flag on its government buildings, Bukhaiti said that there are currently clashes between the organization and Ansar Allah. Certain forces, especially the Muslim Brotherhood and some tribes, support al-Qaeda. However he added, “We are capable of defeating them and freeing the people from their wickedness.”

At least 35 individuals were killed yesterday [Oct. 20] as a result of two attacks by al-Qaeda, targeting Houthi members in Radaa district, in the center of Yemen, as well as the clashes that occurred between both parties in the district — which is considered one of the most important strongholds for Ansar al-Sharia, affiliated with the terrorist organization.

A suicide bombing, executed by al-Qaeda in a rigged car, near a checkpoint for the Houthis in Radaa in the governorate of Bayda, resulted in 15 victims, including children. A previous rigged car incident by al-Qaeda, targeting Houthi headquarters in Radaa, followed by clashes, resulted in 20 victims, according to tribal sources.

The same sources mentioned that members of the extremist organization kidnapped 12 Houthis during the clashes in Radaa.

According to tribal and medical sources, 10 Houthi members were killed during the clashes in Anss in the governorate of Dhamar.

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