Revolutionary youth, Military Committee demand military restructuring
Meanwhile, the Military Committee, established to maintain security in Sana’a, asserted the importance of exerting intensive efforts to begin Yemen’s reshuffling of military and security forces. The committee called on all political powers to cooperate with them to solve any and all problems and to carry out the conclusions to work in this period.
The committee held a meeting Saturday, headed by General Abdulqader Qahtan, the Minister of Interior, according to the State-run Saba news agency.
The agency reported that the committee listened to a summary report outlining the achievements of the two technical teams assigned to restructure the Ministry of Defense, the armed forces, the Ministry of Interior, and security apparatuses, as well as plans to start the restructure according to modern scientific and military standards.
Yemen uses a military and security team composed of Jordanian, American and European experts to help plan the restructure.
During Saturday’s meeting, the committee asserted the importance of unifying efforts to make the restructure successful and to overcome the difficulties it could face throughout the process.
Political analyst Arif Abu Hatim said restructuring the military means defusing the civil war some expect to happen in Yemen and eliminating the sources of chaos and terrorism. He said what has been achieved so far is great and vital by virtue of President Abdu Rabu Mansour Hadi’s brave decrees, announced international and popular support.
Abu Hatim confirmed to the Yemen Times that military camps in the south have been plundered and Ansar Al-Sharia militants took weaponry. The same thing happened in Al-Beida’a, he said. Ansar Al-Sharia is a Yemeni militant group with ties to Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).
“Those who lost power and authority but still think they are powerful are behind the latest events in Yemen,” Hatim said.
He said people discovered that the military design established 34 years ago by former President Ali Abdullah Saleh was meant to protect him and his relatives. Now, after the 2011 uprising that removed Saleh from power, people are demanding an army based on national interests, loyal to Yemeni citizens and to the country alone.
“Even the military men who supported the revolution consider the military forces as theirs and not the Yemenis’,” he said.
Abdulkareem Al-Khaiati, a media activist in Sana’a’s Change Square, said Yemen needs the cooperation of regional and international countries and of Yemeni political parties to accept changing Yemen’s military from an army of militias to an institutional entity.
“I think that agreement between President Hadi, leaders of the military that joined the revolution and the defense minister will facilitate the restructuring unless the pro-Saleh leaders obstruct it,” Al-Khaiati said. “It seems that they are supported by the U.S. ambassador, who may have another view regarding the military reorganizing.”
Al-Khaiati said a decree must be issued by Hadi and backed by American and Saudi officials to order the resignations of Ahmed Ali Abdullah Saleh, Ali Mohsen and Yahia Mohammed Abdullah Saleh and to appoint new leaders in Sa’ada, Al-Jawf and Hajja governorates to impose state control over the north. Otherwise, he said, Yemen will be a minefield that negatively affects neighboring countries.
On Friday, revolutionary youth gathered at 60 Meters Road in Sana’a to perform Friday Prayer under the slogan “Restructuring Prior to Dialogue.” They reassured their complete refusal to participate in the National Dialogue, and they demanded an immediate start to reorganization.
Friday’s prayer comes following demands to remove military camps from Sana’a due to the explosion inside a weaponry store related to the First Armored Division on Thursday.