Yemen Politics

Yemen Politics, Population and Geography

General information: North Yemen gained independence in 1918 (before 1918 it was part of the Ottoman Empire). The British, who in the 19th century declared the southern port of Aden their protectorate, in 1967 left this territory, which was called South Yemen. Three years later, the government of South Yemen embarked on a Marxist path of development. The exodus of hundreds of thousands of Yemenis from south to north led to a two-decade feud between the two states. In 1990, the two countries were formally united under the name of the Republic of Yemen. The separatist movement that emerged in the south of the country in 1994 was quickly suppressed. In 2000, Saudi Arabia and Yemen agreed to delimit their border.


Location: Middle East, coast of the Arabian Sea, Gulf of Aden and Red Sea, between Oman and Saudi Arabia.
Geographical coordinates: 15° 00′ N. latitude, 48° 00′ E
Reference map: Middle East.
Area: total: 527,970 km2; land surface area: 527,970 km2; water surface area: 0 km2; note: includes the islands of Perim and Socotra, the former Yemeni Arab Republic (YAR or North Yemen) and the former People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen (PDRY or South Yemen).
Comparative area: slightly more than twice the size of Wyoming.
Land borders: total: 1,746 km; with neighboring states: with Oman 288 km, with Saudi Arabia 1,458 km.
Coastline: 1,906 km.
Maritime claims: neutral waters: 24 nautical miles; continental shelf: 200 nautical miles or to the outer limits of the continent; exclusive economic zone: 200 nautical miles; territorial waters: 12 nautical miles.
Climate: mostly desert; hot and humid along the west coast; in the western mountainous regions, under the influence of seasonal monsoons, moderate; extremely hot, dry, sharply deserted in the east.
Terrain: narrow coastal plain bordered by flat-topped hills and rocky mountains; the dissected desert high plains in the central part of the country gently descend into the desert interior regions of the Arabian Peninsula.
Maximum and minimum heights: lowest point: Arabian Sea 0 m; highest point: Mount An-Nabi-ShaibZ 760 m.
Natural resources: oil, fish, rock salt, marble, small deposits of coal, gold, lead, nickel, copper, fertile soils in the west of the country.
Land use: arable land: 3%; cultivated land: 13%; pastures: 33.5%; forests and plantations: 4%; others: 46.5% (1999).
Irrigated land: 5,674 km2 (1999).
Natural hazards: sand and dust storms in summer.
Current environmental issues: very limited natural sources of fresh water; shortage of drinking water; overgrazing; soil erosion; desertification.
International agreements on environmental protection: member: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Change, Hazardous Waste, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection; signed but not ratified: Nuclear Test Ban.
Geography Note: Strategically located along the Bab el-Mandeb Strait, which connects the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden and is one of the busiest shipping lanes in the world.


Population: 18,078,035 (July 2001 est.).
Age structure: under 14: 47.21% (male 4,340,436; female 4,195,076); 15 to 64 years old: 49.79% (male 4,598,301; female 4,402,402); over 65: 3% (male 274,202; female 267,618) (2001 est.).
Population growth: 3.38% (2001 est.).
Birth rate: 43.36 newborns / 1000 people. (2001 est.).
Mortality: 9.58 deaths / 1000 people. (2001 est.).
Migration: 0 people /1000 people (2001 est.).
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male/female; up to 15 years: 1.03 male/female; 15 to 64 years old: 1.04 male/female; over 65: 1.02 male/female; for the general population: 1.04 male/female (2001 est.);
Child mortality: 68.53 deaths/1000 live births (2001 est.).
Life expectancy: for the general population: 60.21 years; men: 58.45 years; women: 62.05 years (2001 est.).
Total fertility rate: 6.97 children/wives. (2001 est.).
Proportion of adults infected with HIV: 0.01% (1999 est.).
Number of people infected with HIV: no data.
Mortality due to AIDS: no data available.
Nationality: noun: Yemeni; adjective: Yemeni.
Ethnic groups: the vast majority are Arabs; See also Afro-Arabs, South Asians, Europeans.
Believers: Muslims, including the Shafi’i (Sunni) and Zaidi (Shia) sects, a small number of Jews, Christians and Hindus.
Language(s): Arabic.
Literacy: definition: persons aged 15 and over who can read and write; for the general population: 38%; men: 53%; women: 26% (1990 est.).


conventional long form: Republic of Yemen;
conventional short form: Yemen; local long form: Al Jumhuriyah al Yama-niyah; local short form: Al Yaman.
State structure: republic. See to know more about Yemen Political System.
Capital: Sana.
Administrative division: 17 governorates: Abyan, Aden, Atak, Damar, Ibb, Lahj, Marib, Saada, Sanav, Taiz, Hajja, Hadhramaut, Hodeidah, Al-Beida, Al-Jawf, El-Mahwit, El-Mahra; note: three new provinces can be allocated – the capital of Sana’a, El-Daleh, Shabwa. Independence on May 22, 1990, the Republic of Yemen was formed after the unification of the Yemen Arab Republic (Yemen [Sanaa], or North Yemen) and the People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen (Yemen [Aden], or South Yemen), where Marxist ideology dominated; the former North Yemen gained independence in November 1918 (until 1918 – as part of the Ottoman Empire), and South Yemen – on November 30, 1967 (until 1967 – a protectorate of Great Britain).
National holiday: Republic Day, 22 May (1990).
Constitution: adopted May 16, 1991; amended September 29, 1994
Legal system: based on Islamic law, Turkish law, English common law and local tribal customs; does not accept the compulsory jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice.
Suffrage: from 18 years old; universal.
chief of state: President Field Marshal Ali Abdallah SALIH (AN Abdallah SALIH) (since May 22, 1990, former President of North Yemen, took office after the unification of North and South Yemen); Vice President Major General Abd al-Rab Mansur al-HADI (Abd al-Rab Mansur al-HADI) (from October 3, 1994);
head of government: Prime Minister Abd al-Qadir BA JAMAL (since 4 April 2001);
Government: a council of ministers appointed by the president on the advice of the prime minister; elections: the president is elected by popular vote for a five-year term (a new constitutional amendment extends the term by two years to seven years); elections last held 23 September 1999 (next to be held in 2006); the vice president is appointed by the president; the prime minister and deputy prime ministers are appointed by the president; election results: Ali Abdullah SALEH elected president; Percentage of the vote: Ali Abdullah SALEH 96.3%, Najeeb Qahtan AL-SHAABI 3.7%.
Legislature: a new constitutional amendment passed on February 20, 2001 introduces a bicameral legislature consisting of the Shura (111 seats, members appointed by the president) and the House of Representatives (301 seats; members of the house are elected by popular vote for 6-year terms); elections: last held 27 April 1997 (next to be held 27 April 2003); election results: distribution of votes between parties – no data; number of seats – GPC 223, Islah 64, NUP 3, Ba’ath 2, YSP 2, independent 7.
Judiciary: Supreme Court.
Political parties and leaders: there are over 12 political parties in Yemen, the most notable being the General People’s Congress (GPC) (President Ali Abdullah SALAH); Islamic Association for Reform (Islah) (Abdallah bin Husayn al-AHMAR); National Arab Socialist Party (Ba’ath) (Qasim SALAAM [Dr. Qassim SALAAM]); Nasserist Allied Party (NUP) (Abdel Malik al-MAKHLAFI [Abdel Malik al-MAKHLAFI]); Yemeni Socialist Party (YSP) (Ali Salih MYQBIL [AN Salih MYQBIL]); note: President SALEH’s General People’s Congress (GPC) won a landslide victory in the April 1997 House of Representatives elections and no longer forms a coalition with Sheikh Abdullah bin Hussein al-AHMAR’s Islamic Rally for Reforms – the two parties have been in coalition since the end of the civil war. wars in 1994; YSP, loyal opposition party, boycotted the April 1997 legislative election but announced that it would run in the first local elections, expected to be held in February 2001; these local elections are held to decentralize political power and are a key element of the government’s political reform agenda.
Political influence groups and their leaders:
Participation in international organizations: ACC, AFESD, AL, AMF, CAEU, CCC, ESCWA, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ITU, NAM, OAS (observer), OIC, OPCW, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO (observer ).
US Diplomatic Mission: Head of Mission: Ambassador Abd al-Wahhab Abdallah al-HAJRI; office: Suite 705, 2600 Virginia Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20037; phone: [1] (202) 965-4760; fax: [\] (202) 337-2017.
US Diplomatic Mission: Chief of Mission: Ambassador Barbara K. BODINE; embassy: Dhahr Himyar Zone, Sheraton Hotel District, Sanaa; mailing address: R. O. Box 22347, Sanaa; phone: [967] (1) 303-161; fax: [967] (1) 303-182.
Description of the flag: three equally sized horizontal stripes of red (top), white and black; reminiscent of the flag of Syria, which has two green stars, and the flag of Iraq, which has three green stars and an Arabic inscription in the center of the white stripe; also resembles the flag of Egypt, in the center of the white stripe of which is a heraldic eagle.

Yemen Politics