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Introduction Yemen
Background: North Yemen became independent of
the Ottoman Empire in 1918. The
British, who had set up a
protectorate area around the
southern port of Aden in the 19th
century, withdrew in 1967 from what
became South Yemen. Three years
later, the southern government
adopted a Marxist orientation. The
massive exodus of hundreds of
thousands of Yemenis from the south
to the north contributed to two
decades of hostility between the
states. The two countries were
formally unified as the Republic of
Yemen in 1990. A southern
secessionist movement in 1994 was
quickly subdued. In 2000, Saudi
Arabia and Yemen agreed to a
delimitation of their border.

Geography Yemen
Location: Middle East, bordering the Arabian
Sea, Gulf of Aden, and Red Sea,
between Oman and Saudi Arabia
Geographic coordinates: 15 00 N, 48 00 E
Map references: Middle East
Area: total: 527,970 sq km
land: 527,970 sq km
note: includes Perim, Socotra, the
former Yemen Arab Republic (YAR or
North Yemen), and the former
People's Democratic Republic of
Yemen (PDRY or South Yemen)
water: 0 sq km
Area - comparative: slightly larger than twice the size
of Wyoming
Land boundaries: total: 1,746 km
border countries: Oman 288 km, Saudi
Arabia 1,458 km
Coastline: 1,906 km
Maritime claims: contiguous zone: 24 NM
territorial sea: 12 NM
continental shelf: 200 NM or to the
edge of the continental margin
exclusive economic zone: 200 NM
Climate: mostly desert; hot and humid along
west coast; temperate in western
mountains affected by seasonal
monsoon; extraordinarily hot, dry,
harsh desert in east
Terrain: narrow coastal plain backed by flat-
topped hills and rugged mountains;
dissected upland desert plains in
center slope into the desert
interior of the Arabian Peninsula
Elevation extremes: lowest point: Arabian Sea 0 m
highest point: Jabal an Nabi Shu'ayb
3,760 m
Natural resources: petroleum, fish, rock salt, marble,
small deposits of coal, gold, lead,
nickel, and copper, fertile soil in
Land use: arable land: 2.75%
permanent crops: 0.21%
other: 97.04% (1998 est.)
Irrigated land: 4,900 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards: sandstorms and dust storms in summer
Environment - current issues: very limited natural fresh water
resources; inadequate supplies of
potable water; overgrazing; soil
erosion; desertification
Environment - international party to: Biodiversity, Climate
agreements: Change, Desertification, Endangered
Species, Environmental Modification,
Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea,
Ozone Layer Protection
signed, but not ratified: Nuclear
Test Ban
Geography - note: strategic location on Bab el Mandeb,
the strait linking the Red Sea and
the Gulf of Aden, one of world's
most active shipping lanes

People Yemen
Population: 18,701,257 (July 2002 est.)
Age structure: 0-14 years: 47% (male 4,468,928;
female 4,317,648)
15-64 years: 50.1% (male 4,783,769;
female 4,587,309)
65 years and over: 2.9% (male
273,282; female 270,321) (2002 est.)
Population growth rate: 3.4% (2002 est.)
Birth rate: 43.3 births/1,000 population (2002
Death rate: 9.31 deaths/1,000 population (2002
Net migration rate: 0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2002
Sex ratio: at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.04 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 1.01 male(s)/
total population: 1.04 male(s)/
female (2002 est.)
Infant mortality rate: 66.78 deaths/1,000 live births (2002
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 60.59 years
female: 62.46 years (2002 est.)
male: 58.81 years
Total fertility rate: 6.9 children born/woman (2002 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: 0.01% (1999 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/ NA
HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA
Nationality: noun: Yemeni(s)
adjective: Yemeni
Ethnic groups: predominantly Arab; but also Afro-
Arab, South Asians, Europeans
Religions: Muslim including Shaf'i (Sunni) and
Zaydi (Shi'a), small numbers of
Jewish, Christian, and Hindu
Languages: Arabic
Literacy: definition: age 15 and over can read
and write
total population: 38%
male: 53%
female: 26% (1990 est.)

Government Yemen
Country name: conventional long form: Republic of
conventional short form: Yemen
local short form: Al Yaman
local long form: Al Jumhuriyah al
Government type: republic
Capital: Sanaa
Administrative divisions: 17 governorates (muhafazat, singular
- muhafazah); Abyan, 'Adan, Al
Bayda', Al Hudaydah, Al Jawf, Al
Mahrah, Al Mahwit, Dhamar,
Hadramawt, Hajjah, Ibb, Lahij,
Ma'rib, Sa'dah, San'a', Shabwah,
note: there may be three more
governorates: Ad Dali', Amran, and
the capital city of Sanaa
Independence: 22 May 1990, Republic of Yemen was
established with the merger of the
Yemen Arab Republic [Yemen (Sanaa)
or North Yemen] and the Marxist-
dominated People's Democratic
Republic of Yemen [Yemen (Aden) or
South Yemen]; previously North Yemen
had become independent on NA
November 1918 (from the Ottoman
Empire) and South Yemen had become
independent on 30 November 1967
(from the UK)
National holiday: Unification Day, 22 May (1990)
Constitution: 16 May 1991; amended 29 September
1994 and February 2001
Legal system: based on Islamic law, Turkish law,
English common law, and local tribal
customary law; has not accepted
compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal
Executive branch: chief of state: President Field
Marshall Ali Abdallah SALIH (since
22 May 1990, the former president of
North Yemen, assumed office upon the
merger of North and South Yemen);
Vice President Maj. Gen. Abd al-Rab
Mansur al-HADI (since 3 October
head of government: Prime Minister
Abd al-Qadir BA JAMAL (since 4 April
cabinet: Council of Ministers
appointed by the president on the
advice of the prime minister
election results: Ali Abdallah SALIH
elected president; percent of vote -
Ali Abdallah SALIH 96.3%, Najib
Qahtan AL-SHAABI 3.7%
elections: president elected by
direct, popular vote for a seven-
year term (recently extended from a
five-year term by constitutional
amendment); election last held 23
September 1999 (next to be held NA
2006); vice president appointed by
the president; prime minister and
deputy prime ministers appointed by
the president
Legislative branch: a new constitutional amendment
ratified on 20 February 2001 created
a bicameral legislature consisting
of a Shura Council (111 seats;
members appointed by the president)
and a House of Representatives (301
seats; members elected by popular
vote to serve six-year terms)
election results: percent of vote by
party - NA%; seats by party - GPC
189, Islah 52, Nasserite Unionist
Party 3, National Arab Socialist
Baath Party 2, independents 54,
election pending 1; seats by party
as of January 2002: GPC 223, Islah
64, Nasserite Unionist Party 3,
National Arab Socialist Baath Party
2, YSP 2, independents 7
elections: last held 27 April 1997
(next to be held 27 April 2003)
Judicial branch: Supreme Court
Political parties and leaders: there are over 12 political parties
active in Yemen, some of the more
prominent are: General People's
Congress or GPC [President Ali
Abdallah SALIH]; Islamic Reform
Grouping or Islah [Shaykh Abdallah
bin Husayn al-AHMAR]; National Arab
Socialist Baath Party [Dr. Qassim
SALAAM]; Nasserite Unionist Party
[Abdel Malik al-MAKHLAFI]; Yemeni
Socialist Party or YSP [Ali Salih
note: President SALIH's General
People's Congress or GPC won a
landslide victory in the April 1997
legislative election and no longer
governs in coalition with Shaykh
Abdallah bin Husayn al-AHMAR's
Islamic Reform Grouping or Islah -
the two parties had been in
coalition since the end of the civil
war in 1994; the YSP, a loyal
opposition party, boycotted the
April 1997 legislative election, but
announced that it would participate
in Yemen's first local elections
which were held in February 2001;
these local elections aim to
decentralize political power and are
a key element of the government's
political reform program
Political pressure groups and NA
International organization ACC, AFESD, AL, AMF, CAEU, CCC,
participation: ESCWA, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO,
IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC,
IOM, ITU, NAM, OAS (observer), OIC,
WTrO (observer)
Diplomatic representation in the US: chief of mission: Ambassador Abd al-
Wahhab Abdallah al-HAJRI
FAX: [1] (202) 337-2017
telephone: [1] (202) 965-4760
chancery: Suite 705, 2600 Virginia
Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20037
Diplomatic representation from the chief of mission: Ambassador Edmund
US: J. HULL (since 17 September 2001)
embassy: Dhahar Himyar Zone,
Sheraton Hotel District, Sanaa
mailing address: P. O. Box 22347,
telephone: [967] (1) 303-161
FAX: [967] (1) 303-182
Flag description: three equal horizontal bands of red
(top), white, and black; similar to
the flag of Syria which has two
green stars and of Iraq which has
three green stars (plus an Arabic
inscription) in a horizontal line
centered in the white band; also
similar to the flag of Egypt which
has a heraldic eagle centered in the
white band

Economy Yemen
Economy - overview: Yemen, one of the poorest countries
in the Arab world, reported strong
growth in the mid-1990s with the
onset of oil production, but has
been harmed by periodic declines in
oil prices. Yemen has embarked on an
IMF-supported structural adjustment
program designed to modernize and
streamline the economy, which has
led to substantial foreign debt
relief and restructuring. Aided by
higher oil prices in 1999-2000,
Yemen worked to maintain tight
control over spending and implement
additional components of the IMF
program. A high population growth
rate and internal political
dissension complicate the
government's task.
GDP: purchasing power parity - $14.8
billion (2001 est.)
GDP - real growth rate: 4% (2001 est.)
GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $820 (2001
GDP - composition by sector: agriculture: 17%
industry: 40%
services: 43% (1998)
Population below poverty line: NA
Household income or consumption by lowest 10%: 3%
percentage share: highest 10%: 25.9% (1998)
Distribution of family income - Gini 33.4 (1998)
Inflation rate (consumer prices): 10% (2001 est.)
Labor force: NA
Labor force - by occupation: most people are employed in
agriculture and herding; services,
construction, industry, and commerce
account for less than one-fourth of
the labor force
Unemployment rate: 30% (1995 est.)
Budget: revenues: $3 billion
expenditures: $3.1 billion,
including capital expenditures of
$NA (2001 est.)
Industries: crude oil production and petroleum
refining; small-scale production of
cotton textiles and leather goods;
food processing; handicrafts; small
aluminum products factory; cement
Industrial production growth rate: NA%
Electricity - production: 3.2 billion kWh (2000)
Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel: 100%
hydro: 0%
other: 0% (2000)
nuclear: 0%
Electricity - consumption: 2.976 billion kWh (2000)
Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (2000)
Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (2000)
Agriculture - products: grain, fruits, vegetables, pulses,
qat (mildly narcotic shrub), coffee,
cotton; dairy products, livestock
(sheep, goats, cattle, camels),
poultry; fish
Exports: $3.9 billion (f.o.b., 2001 est.)
Exports - commodities: crude oil, coffee, dried and salted
Exports - partners: Thailand 34%, China 26%, South Korea
14%, Singapore 9%, Japan 3%, Saudi
Arabia 3% (1999)
Imports: $3 billion (f.o.b., 2001 est.)
Imports - commodities: food and live animals, machinery and
Imports - partners: Saudi Arabia 10%, UAE 8%, France 7%,
US 7%, Italy 6% (1999)
Debt - external: $4.7 billion (2001)
Economic aid - recipient: $176.1 million (1995)
Currency: Yemeni rial (YER)
Currency code: YER
Exchange rates: Yemeni rials per US dollar - 171.860
(December 2001), 168.678 (2001),
161.718 (2000), 155.718 (1999),
135.882 (1998), 129.281 (1997)
Fiscal year: calendar year

Communications Yemen
Telephones - main lines in use: 291,359 (1999)
Telephones - mobile cellular: 32,042 (2000)
Telephone system: general assessment: since
unification in 1990, efforts have
been made to create a national
telecommunications network
domestic: the national network
consists of microwave radio relay,
cable, tropospheric scatter, and GSM
cellular mobile telephone systems
international: satellite earth
stations - 3 Intelsat (2 Indian
Ocean and 1 Atlantic Ocean), 1
Intersputnik (Atlantic Ocean
region), and 2 Arabsat; microwave
radio relay to Saudi Arabia and
Radio broadcast stations: AM 6, FM 1, shortwave 2 (1998)
Radios: 1.05 million (1997)
Television broadcast stations: 7 (plus several low-power repeaters)
Televisions: 470,000 (1997)
Internet country code: .ye
Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2000)
Internet users: 14,000 (2001)

Transportation Yemen
Railways: 0 km
Highways: total: 69,263 km
paved: 9,963 km
unpaved: 59,300 km (1999)
Waterways: none
Pipelines: crude oil 644 km; petroleum products
32 km
Ports and harbors: Aden, Al Hudaydah, Al Mukalla, As
Salif, Ras Issa, Mocha, Nishtun
Merchant marine: total: 4 ships (1,000 GRT or over)
totaling 15,002 GRT/23,752 DWT
ships by type: cargo 1, petroleum
tanker 3
note: includes some foreign-owned
ships registered here as a flag of
convenience: Hong Kong 2 (2002 est.)
Airports: 49 (2001)
Airports - with paved runways: total: 14
over 3,047 m: 3
2,438 to 3,047 m: 8
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 1
under 914 m: 1 (2001)
Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 35
over 3,047 m: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 8
1,524 to 2,437 m: 8
914 to 1,523 m: 13
under 914 m: 4 (2001)

Military Yemen
Military branches: Army (includes Special Forces,
established in 1999), Navy, Air
Force, Air Defense Forces,
Republican Guard
Military manpower - military age: 14 years of age (2002 est.)
Military manpower - availability: males age 15-49: 4,272,156 (2002
Military manpower - fit for military males age 15-49: 2,397,914 (2002
service: est.)
Military manpower - reaching males: 238,690 (2002 est.)
military age annually:
Military expenditures - dollar $482.5 million (FY01)
Military expenditures - percent of 5.2% (FY01)
Military - note: establishement of a Coast Guard,
scheduled for May 2001, has been

Transnational Issues Yemen
Disputes - international: demarcation of delimited boundary
with Saudi Arabia involves nomadic
tribal affiliations; Yemen has
asserted traditional fishing rights
to islands ceded to Eritrea in ICJ
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