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Socotra: UAE continues to train militias amid coup plot against Yemen government

UAE backed forces in Yemen [File photo]
UAE backed forces in Yemen [File photo]

The UAE is intent on executing a coup on the Yemeni island of Socotra, according to adviser to the government’s Ministry of Information, Mukhtar Al-Rahbi.

In a series of tweets, Al-Rahbi claimed Emirati official, Khalfan Al-Mazrouei, who is working as a representative of the Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation, is actually plotting with local collaborators to implement a coup against Yemeni authorities on the island.

“The UAE sends its representative to Socotra, Brigadier Khalfan Al-Mazrouei, to cause chaos,” Al-Rahbi said in a tweet. He went on to say the Emirati had met with local groups and security officials “to orchestrate a coup under the guise of providing necessary services”.

Al-Rahbi added that there is a conspiracy against Socotra by UAE-backed militias, some of whom have received training in Abu Dhabi. He acknowledged that some of these fighters were local to the island and others had been recruited from Dhale and Yafa on the mainland.

There are fears that the UAE-backed militants could wrest control over the island, as they did with the southern Yemeni port city of Aden last month, although Al-Rahbi stressed that the UAE will not succeed and that strict measures are in place in an effort to avoid a repeat of the Aden scenario.

There had been previous reports of the UAE’s activities on the UNESCO protected island, with locals fearful that an occupation may ensue at the hands of UAE-backed foreign mercenaries.

In an attempt to halt these developments, the Socotra Airport recently temporarily suspended Emirates Airline flights to the island.

READ: Activist calls for withdrawal of Sudanese troops from Yemen

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