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Battle for Yemen's Marib Reveals Iran’s Expansionist Plot in Region

Battle for Yemen's Marib Reveals Iran’s Expansionist Plot in Region

Monday, 22 February, 2021 - 06:30
Government troops repel a Houthi offensive on Marib, some 120 kilometers (75 miles) east of Yemen's capital, Sanaa, on Feb. 14, 2021. (Getty Images)

The interest of Iran and its proxies in the Arab world in the battle for the Marib province reveals the extent the Tehran regime and its militias are involved in Yemen.

Many of its proxies view it as a “decisive” battle that will determine the fate of their expansionist agenda in the region.

Yemenis believe the battle in Marib pits Iran and its regional proxies against them and the Arabs. Yemen, which Iran was seeking to transform into a platform for its regional agenda, has become a solid obstacle in achieving its ambitions.

Yemeni Chief of Staff Sagheer bin Aziz vowed in statements to the media that the military will be victorious against the “rabid” Houthi militias, which are being spurred to battle by Iran. Its terrorist representative Hasan Irlu is leading these battles.

“The Houthis are pawns used by Iran to implement its destructive agenda in Yemen and the Arab world,” he added.

“The militias want us to become subordinate to Iran, but the Yemeni people will never yield,” he declared.

The Houthis, he warned, harbor hatred towards the Yemenis, Arabs and humanity and “they threaten with death anyone who differs with or stands against them.”

Yemen’s Ambassador to UNESCO Dr. Mohammed Saleh Ahmed Jumeh said the manner in which pro-Iran media is covering the battle and their incitement against Marib proves that the fight is “fateful” for them.

“The battle for Marib must be fateful for the Yemenis and Arabs. Marib has persevered and Irlu’s mercenaries continue to pour in. Marib is entitled to have all capabilities dedicated to protect it and defeat the incoming forces of darkness,” he tweeted.

Yemeni political analyst Hamdan al-Alay said the battle pits Arabs against Iranians, adding: “Yemen is the barrier protecting Arab countries from Iran’s hegemony over the region.”

In remarks to Asharq Al-Awsat, he said that the from the very moment the Houthis launched their war in Saada in 2004, the Yemeni people were aware that they were being backed by Iran.

The Houthis have copied Iran’s political creed and are receiving political, financial, military and media support from Tehran, he added.

The Houthis are Iran’s “clawed” hand in the Arabian Peninsula and they have an agenda they want to pursue in the entire region, he continued.

“Yemen is but the launchpad for this agenda,” he stated, saying coordination is ongoing between the militias with Iran’s proxies in the region, including Iraq and Lebanon.

“The Marib battle only proves this point,” al-Alay said. “We have seen how (Hezbollah chief Hassan) Nasrallah and Iranian activists have openly declared support for the Houthis in Marib. They view it as a fateful battle, it is clear to see.”

United Nations envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths had urged the militias to end their offensive in Marib, saying: “The attack on Marib must stop. It puts millions of civilians at risk. The quest for territorial gain by force threatens the peace process”

“Victory in Marib will not be for the legitimate government, as many are claiming,” continued al-Alay, “but it will be a victory for the entire Arab world against the Iranian threat to the Arabian Peninsula.”

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