İrem GÖL -TDO- According to Al Jazeera, fighting on the island of Socotra has come to an end after an agreement was reached between Saudi-backed government forces and the United Arab Emirates backed southern separatists. The de-escalation agreement announced late on Friday came after an armed unit of the Southern Transitional Council (STC) fought to wrest control of Socotra’s provincial capital, Hadibo, from forces loyal to President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi.
Two sides were nominal allies in a military coalition formed by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to battle Yemen’s Houthi rebel movement, which seized control of the capital, Sanaa, in late 2014. The STC turned on Hadi in August last year and took control of Aden, the internationally recognized government’s temporary seat. The fighting stopped when the two groups reached a deal in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, intending to form a unity government.
But clashed continued in the ensuing months, and earlier this week the United Arab Emirates backed STC declared self-rule and a state of emergency in parts of the country’s south under its control. After Friday’s agreement in Socotra, the coalition and government forces will secure the town and local authorities’ facilities, while checkpoints and military vehicles belonging to both sides are expected to be removed.