United Kingdom–Yemen relations

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United Kingdom–Yemen relations

United Kingdom


United Kingdom–Yemen relations refers to the current and historical relationship between United Kingdom and Yemen..


The UK-Yemeni relationship dates back to 1839, when the strategically crucial southern port was conquered by the British East India Company. It was ruled as part of British India, until it was made a Crown colony in 1937. Pressure for the British to leave South Yemen grew in the early 1960s and following a bloody few years of protests, attacks and civil war between royalists and republicans they were driven from Aden in 1967.

2011 Yemeni uprising[edit]

On 19 February, the BBC News reported that UK Foreign Secretary William Hague said he was "deeply concerned" by the "unacceptable violence" used against protesters.[1] On 18 February, the UK government had announced that in light of the unrest it was considering revoking some arms export licenses stating that "licenses will not be issued when officials judge that there is a risk that the exports may provoke regional or internal conflicts or be used to facilitate internal repression".[2] On 4 June, the UK Foreign Secretary advised any Britons still in Yemen to leave immediately while commercial flights are still in operation, as the UK Government cannot guarantee evacuation under the circumstances. However on 6 June it was reported that UK Royal Navy forces are on standby off the coast of Yemen to assist with any possible evacuation. Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama urged Saleh to resign in a joint press conference on 25 May.[3]

Yemeni Diaspora in United Kingdom[edit]

The early links with Britain had led to Yemeni immigrants forming some of the oldest Muslim communities in the UK - particularly in the port areas of Liverpool, South Shields and Cardiff. With Aden being the main refuelling stop for ships between Britain and the Far East, many of the seamen went to the UK to work and then settled.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Staff (19 February 2011). "Hague Condemns Violence in Libya, Bahrain and Yemen". BBC News. Retrieved 17 May 2011. 
  2. ^ Staff (18 February 2011). "Bahrain Forces Fire at Protesters – Troops Open Live Fire Around Pearl Roundabout in Manama after Nightfall, at Least 66 Wounded". Al Jazeera English. Retrieved 17 May 2011. 
  3. ^ "Obama tells Yemen’s Saleh to quit amid Sanaa clashes". The Raw Story. 25 May 2011. Retrieved 7 August 2011.