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Yemen’s PLC in 100 Days: Overcoming Divisions, Prioritizing the Economy

Yemen’s PLC in 100 Days: Overcoming Divisions, Prioritizing the Economy

Thursday, 28 July, 2022 - 09:45
The Yemeni Presidential Leadership Council in Aden, mid-April 2022 (Saba News Agency)

The Yemeni Presidential Leadership Council (PLC) has completed 100 days in office, after the historic decision resulting from the Riyadh consultations to hand over power to the Council on April 7.

To date, the PLC is still required to fulfill the great promises it made at the beginning of its term.

The promises included achieving breakthroughs in economic and living conditions, providing services, restoring the state, and achieving peace for Yemenis.

In an interview with Asharq Al-Awsat, political analyst Fares al-Beil pointed to the mostly positive rhythm the PLC was moving in, adding that if it continues to move in that direction it would be able to go far in making the government present with people’s support.

Moving in the right direction, according to al-Beil, means that the PLC would be able to achieve more in terms of normalizing life in Yemen and recovering basic services in Aden and other liberated regions.

“The PLC’s speech so far appears superior and mature,” al-Beil told Asharq Al-Awsat, adding that the body, in order to remain influential, must take actual steps on the ground and fulfill the clear and specific promises it made.

It goes without saying that the military conflict is the most sensitive and urgent file facing the PLC as unifying the military and security formations remains crucial for the country to move forward.

Therefore, the PLC approved the formation of the joint security and military committee to achieve security and stability, led by the veteran military figure Haitham Qassem Taher.

The PLC seeks restructuring armed and security forces in accordance with Article V of the Declaration on the Transfer of Power.

Although the committee was established in late May, the committee has not yet taken any notable action.

This indicates that the committee is still in the process of accomplishing the tasks entrusted to it, which aim to achieve the integration of the armed forces under a unified national command structure within the framework of the rule of law.

Speaking to Asharq Al-Awsat under the conditions of anonymity, a security and military researcher predicted confusion and delays striking the committee’s work.

“The task at hand is so difficult and complex that it takes years to complete,” they said, explaining that the committee needs to secure agreements, concessions, and acceptance.

According to the researcher, the committee must deal with challenges rising on multiple fronts, including the war waged by Iran-backed Houthi militias.

During the past three months, change brought about by the establishment of the PLC had a noticeable political impact.

The PLC assuming power has unified political discourse in the media and lowered the intensity of bickering among Yemeni forces and parties.

It also reminded everyone of the need for unity in the battle against coup militias.

Journalist Ibtihal Al-Mikhlafi argues that although the PLC succeeded to some extent in mitigating the language of division, citizens will ultimately assess the council’s performance through examining economic and service files.

“We are fully aware that the PLC carries sensitive files; Therefore, 100 days in office is not enough to evaluate its role,” Al-Mikhlafi told Asharq Al-Awsat.

“The PLC has made several promises in the economic aspect, the results of which have not yet appeared,” she added.

Al-Mikhlafi pointed out that the visits of PLC Chairman Rashad al-Alimi to several regional countries make for good efforts to attract economic support for Yemen.

Yemenis are waiting for achievements that can be built upon in terms of services and livelihood and finding solutions to the economic crisis in liberated areas.

Since the PLC assumed power, there has been relative living and economic stability in Yemen. The PLC’s rise to power has helped the stability of local currency exchange rates against foreign currencies.

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