NDF Rebellion

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NDF Rebellion
Part of the Cold War and the Arab Cold War
CIA map of NDF activity in North Yemen.png
CIA map of the NDF area of operations in May 1982
Date1978 – 1982
(4 years)
Result Government victory
 North Yemen
Flag of Jihad.svg Islamic Front
Supported by:
 Saudi Arabia
 Republic of China
 United States
Yemeni Socialist Party Flag.svg NDF
Supported by:
 South Yemen
 Soviet Union
Commanders and leaders
Yemen Arab Republic Ali Abdullah Saleh
Yemen Arab Republic Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar
Yemeni Socialist Party Flag.svg Yahya Shami
Yemeni Socialist Party Flag.svg Sultan Ahmad Umar [ar]
South Yemen Abdul Fattah Ismail

The NDF Rebellion was an uprising in the Yemen Arab Republic by the National Democratic Front, under Yahya Shami,[2] between 1978 and 1982.[3]


1978 start[edit]

The rebellion began in 1978, following the death of Ahmad al-Ghashmi and the rise to power of Ali Abdullah Saleh.[3] The NDF was supported in its rebellion by the PDRY[3] and Libya.[2] The NDF enjoyed various successes throughout the war, although it was weakened by the peace treaty between North and South Yemen following the 1979 border war.[3]

There were several attempts at ceasefires between the government and the NDF. Kuwait managed to facilitate the signing of a ceasefire between the government and the NDF on 26 November 1981, although hostilities re-erupted in December 1981.[2] Later, the Palestinian Liberation Organization was able to mediate a ceasefire agreement on 3 April 1982, however hostilities began again later the same April, with the NDF capturing Juban. Government forces in turn attacked NDF positions in Juban in May 1982.

May 1982[edit]

PDRY support for the NDF diminished under the Presidency of the less overtly militant Ali Nasir Muhammad,[3] and PDRY support for the NDF finally ended in May 1982.[2] Dhamar, a major NDF stronghold, sustained major damage during the 1982 North Yemen earthquake.[4] The NDF was eventually defeated by a rejuvenated YAR Army in conjunction with the pro-government Islamic Front, allowing the YAR government to finally establish control over the North-South border region.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Foreign Policy in Focus, Yemen, the United States, and Al-Qaida. December 19, 2001, retrieved Sept. 19, 2009 Archived July 26, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ a b c d 10. Kingdom of Yemen/Yemen Arab Republic/North Yemen (1918-1990) - University of Central Arkansas
  3. ^ a b c d e f Burrowes, Robert D. (2010). Historical Dictionary of Yemen. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 252.
  4. ^ "Earthquake Toll in Yemen Area Is Put at 1,082". The New York Times. Associated Press. 15 December 1982. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 30 November 2019.