Friends of South Yemen

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Zoom video conference

Wednesday, July 22nd 2020 at 18:30 BST



In August last year tens of thousands of Yemenis from across the country’s southern region marched to the capital Aden  in  a million man parade celebrating the liberation of the south from the Houthis and the announcement of the Southern Transitional Council (STC) whose aim to see the establishment of an independent southern state.

But in media interviews some Adenis pointed out that the march was no doubt huge, but it was made up of Bedouins and people from other cities across the south. Some Adenis claim they have been largely isolated from the independence campaign despite it unravelling on their doorstep. There is also a feeling that some people just want the delivery of service and normality in the payment of their salaries.

This online briefing will discuss the case for southern statehood. What does the future hold? Seemingly oblivious to the realities on the ground the United Nations and the international community have consistently affirmed the legitimacy of the internationally recognised government and Yemen’s territorial integrity.

But Humpty Dumpty has fallen off the wall, is broken, and can never be put back together again.  The cultural differences between the north and the south are incompatible and  the Houthis want to rule over the entire country and turn it into their version of an Islamic state.

The south could be an independent state if the Gulf countries and other states who are intervening in the conflict give the southerners a chance to decide their future. But what kind of future will that be: a united southern state with a central government based in Aden, a federation of southern states where the governorates run their own affairs or a fragmented south with mini statelets and local rulers vying for power?

Click here to view a video of the conference. The duration is 1 hour 27 minutes.

A 44-page booklet containing the full transcript of the FOSY Web Conference is available to read online or download.

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For a printed copy, please send your request to:


Abdul Galil Shaif Kasim, Chairman of the Friends of South Yemen, a society whose main goal is the establishment of an independent state in South Yemen. A British Yemeni he has lived in the UK since childhood and graduated with a Master’s degree in economics and a PhD in political science. Currently he is chief executive of the Hadfield Institute. He was Chairman of the Aden Free Zone Public Authority. He now lives in Sheffield and in the late 1990s was Chief Executive of MOWJ Media. He has been active in drawing the attention of British politicians to the situation in Yemen.

Karen Dabrowska, the secretary of FOSY, is a freelance journalist focusing on the Middle East and Islamic Affairs. She is the author of ten books including Iraq: the Ancient Sites and Iraqi Kurdistan and Into the Abyss: Human Rights Violations in Bahrain and the Suppression of the Popular Movement for Change. She contributes regularly to The Middle East Magazine and other publications dealing with the MENA region.

Shabana Mohamed Shafi Abdulkarim, an advocate for sustainable peace and development, a commercial artist, founder cum owner of Sheen for Trade & Marketing & Petroleum Services Yemen and Commercial Advisor at GMC international for general trading India. During the Arab Spring she worked as a Programme Manager for Food for Peace with Relief International and assisted IDP’s in Aden and Lahaj. She is also a founding member of the Indo-Arab Society ladies wing in Mumbai-India.

Linda Muhammad Ali Hussain, a lawyer, political activist and journalist. She defended political detainees and activists and worked for the Court of Appeal in Sanaa as a juvenile criminal lawyer. She also worked with the UN Refugee Agency as a lawyer dealing with refugee issues and as a human rights activist for Hood Organization and the National Authority for the Defence of Rights and Freedoms. Linda was a member of the High Committee for National Dialogue 2010-2011.

Hadeel Oueis, an experienced radio and newspaper reporter who covered the White House and State Department news. She is a T.V. News Analyst (BBC Arabic, France 24, DW, Al-Hurra, Al Ghad UAE, Fox News US) and an opinion writer (Washington Institute) and founder and member of the board of directors for (North Press Agency) and has written scripts for short videos. Hadeel is also a public speaker, advocate and Arabic social media platforms coordinator for JIMENA (In Defense of the Jews of the Arab World).