From the reign of Sheba to the Ottoman rule. News about the existence of the kingdom of Sheba we have Assyrian inscriptions (8th century BC). At the same time as this realm, other state entities also developed in the Yemen The urban centers, in which there are remains of monumental buildings, temples and irrigation works and from which numerous sculptures and epigraphic materials come, arise in relation to trade routes, whose control seems to be linked to the Sabean expansion in Eritrea and Tigray. According to Localcollegeexplorer, between the 5th and the 3rd century. BC Around 115 BC the capital was transferred from Ma’rib to Zafar, near the present Yarim, while the Himyarite tribe acquired preponderant weight in the kingdom; the other South Arabian kingdoms of Main, Qataban and Hadramawt (2nd century AD) were then absorbed after the defeat of Elio Gallo in 25-24 BC. The unified Yemeni state was attacked and temporarily occupied in the 4th century. from the reign of Aksum, who in 525 definitively subjugated the Himyarite kingdom. In 575 the Persian domination was replaced by the Ethiopian dominion, soon overwhelmed by the Muslim expansion. The advent of Islam marked the end of the astral cults akin to Mesopotamian and Phoenician ones, the complete dominance of classical Northern Arabic over the local dialects of the Southern Semitic group, and the nominal incorporation of Y into the Caliphate. In reality, various rival dynasties such as the Ziyadids, Nagiahids and Mahdids of Tihamat, the minor Ismaili dynasties that reigned in Aden until the 12th century, and the Zaydis, did not take long to become semi-independent. The latter managed, albeit with prolonged interruptions, to maintain power from the 9th century. until recently, progressively affirming itself over other local families. In the 16th century. the Yemen it was partially occupied by the Turks, rejected by the Zaydis in 1630; San’a has since paid a tribute to the Ottoman Empire, which reconquered the country during the 19th century.
The division into two states. With the capture of Aden (1839) British penetration began in the South: between 1882 and 1914 London established its protectorate on 23 small states located along the Hadramawt coast. In the North, Imam Yahya ibn Muhammad, after the Ottoman withdrawal and the affirmation of independence (1918), tried to reconquer Aden, but in 1934 he had to recognize the border with the protectorate. Ascended to the throne in 1948, the imam Ahmed initiated a cautious economic development policy with Western help. Upon his death (1962) a group of officers led by Colonel ‛Abdallah Sallal proclaimed the Arab Republic of Yemen, while the heir to the throne, Muhammad al-Badr, began a bloody guerilla warfare; the Saudi intervention in support of the monarchists was matched by the Egyptian intervention alongside the republicans. The civil war ended with the affirmation of the republican regime (1970). Meanwhile, in 1967, the end of the British protectorate on the southern Yemen had allowed the birth of the People’s Republic of the Southern Yemen Power was assumed by the National Liberation Front (FLN, established in 1963), of socialist inspiration, but political life it was long conditioned by the bitter contrasts within it. Initiated a policy of nationalization and collaboration with the socialist countries, in 1970 the People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen was proclaimed. Prime Minister ‛Ali al-Nasir Muhammad also assumed the post of interim head of state and the FLN was transformed into the Yemeni Socialist Party (PSY). In the North, the pacification policy promoted by ‛Abd er-Rahman al-Iryani clashed with the difficult economic reality of the country and with the centrifugal forces expressed above all by the pro-Saudi tribal confederations. In 1974 a coup d’état installed a military junta led by Ibrahim al-Hamdi. Murdered in Oct. 1977, he was replaced by Colonel Ahmed Husain al-Ghashmi, who got himself elected president of the Republic but was himself assassinated the following year; the presidency was then assumed by Colonel ‛Ali‛ Abdallah Salih. In the meantime, a strong left opposition emerged, organized in the National Democratic Front, a guerrilla movement supported by the Yemen of the South until 1982. Inter-Yemeni relations, long characterized by the alternation of phases of serious tension (which resulted in 1972 and 1979 in open conflict) and moments of relaxation, in the early 1980s experienced an improvement. In the South, the general secretary of the PSY, ‛Abd al-Fattah Isma‛il, who also became head of state, was dismissed in 1980 and in his place went al-Nasir Muhammad, who sought to improve relations with the Arab states of the region. In 1985 the presidency of the council passed to H. Abu Bakr al-‛attas, who, after conflicts within the management team and very serious clashes, also assumed the presidency of the Republic, while the position of general secretary of the PSY was attributed to ‛A. Salam al-Bid. In addition to strengthening relations with moderate Arab countries, the new leadership group introduced political and economic liberalization measures towards the end of the decade.
Unification. The détente process between the two countries suffered a new setback following the discovery of oil fields (1983-84) in the border areas, but the consideration of the benefits of joint exploitation constituted a push towards unification and in May 1990 the Republic of Yemen was proclaimed. The new Constitution established a presidential council, including ‛Abdallah Salih as president and‛ A. Salam al-Bid. Projects for economic development and integration were thwarted by the serious political and economic consequences of the crisis that followed the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait (1990). The strong social tensions that ensued added to the wave of severe political violence, especially against PSY leaders, after unification. In the political elections of 1993, the General People’s Congress (CGP, party of President Salih) was established, followed by the Union for Reform (al-Islah), an Islamic-inspired formation, and the PSYemen A coalition government was formed between the three parties, but the strengthening of the agreement between the CGP and al-Islah accentuated the differences with the socialists and al-Bid took refuge in Aden. The growing tension between the two ruling groups and the two armies, which remained separate, resulted in open conflict in 1994, which was resolved with the conquest of Aden by the troops of the North. Salih was re-elected President of the Republic in 1994, 1999 and 2006. The authoritarianism and corruption his government is accused of, however, make Yemen politically and socially unstable. Local fundamentalist groups have increased their influence in the country, giving rise not only to a series of subversive and terrorist acts that have followed one another since 2000, but also to institutional changes: since 1994, Islamic law has become a source of Yemeni law. In addition, since 2004, a conflict has been ongoing in the North between the government and Zaydi Shiite rebel groups.