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Tuesday Papers

News Yemen has a very interesting piece on the make-up of the tribal mediation committee that freed the Japanese engineer and his Yemeni kidnapper as well as a few insights into how the tribal mediation works – of particular note is how the mediators presented their guns as a guarantee. (The article is fairly short but for those with no background in ‘urf, I would recommend at least a quick read.) It turns out that stories of an al-Qaeda kidnapping were greatly exaggerated.

Yemeni security forces try and fail (for the second time) to arrest Ahmad Salim Ahmad Salum al-Sabayhi, a member of the Southern Movement’s Leadership Council.

In other news, Yemen demonstrates that countries really don’t need an ambassador if you have the right special envoys. In this case, after an Omani official said that dialogue was the solution to Yemen’s problems, President Salih dispatched his son Ahmad, head of the Special Forces and Republican Guard, to Oman to meet with Sultan Qabus.

This is an interesting choice and it, once again, fuels speculation about succession. Ahmad is not a diplomat and to dispatch him to Oman, I think, suggests something about how President Salih is arranging his pieces.


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