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United Arab Emirates

CrisisWatch United Arab Emirates

Deteriorated Situation

Huthis in Yemen launched largest attack on country to date, killing three people. After United Arab Emirates (UAE)-aligned forces in Yemen seized territory in north-western Shebwa governorate (see Yemen), Huthis carried out attacks on UAE. Huthis 2 Jan seized Emirati vessel in Red Sea and 17 Jan claimed attack targeting industrial facility in Musaffah and extension of airport in capital Abu Dhabi, killing three and injuring six; Huthis 24 Jan targeted Dhafra air base hosting U.S. military in UAE. Attacks come after increasing visibility of Emirati role in Yemen as reports have indicated in recent weeks that UAE has stepped up air operations and support to anti-Huthi groups, despite previous 2019 UAE announcement of withdrawal from conflict. Authorities 31 Jan said they had intercepted missile fired by Huthis from Yemen. Attack came as Israeli President Herzog 30-31 Jan travelled to UAE in first ever visit by Israeli president and discussed security and bilateral relations with Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

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Reports & Briefings

The United Arab Emirates in the Horn of Africa

Also available in العربية

Somalia and the Gulf Crisis

Also available in العربية

In The News

14 Dec 2021
The fact that Saudi Arabia and the UAE are becoming more willing to engage the Iranians will bring them closer to the other countries in the GCC [Gulf Cooperation Council]. Al Jazeera

Dina Esfandiary

Senior Advisor, Middle East and North Africa
28 Aug 2020
The adversarial positions of the UAE and Turkey across the Middle East and North Africa are spilling into the East Mediterranean dispute. Time

Nigar Göksel

Project Director, Türkiye

Latest Updates

Podcast / Africa

Hold Your Fire: Ethiopia's Political Crisis

In this podcast series, Crisis Group President Rob Malley and Board Member Naz Modirzadeh, a Harvard professor of international law and armed conflict, dive deep into the conflicts that rage around the globe, along with Crisis Group field analysts and special guests. This week, they discuss U.S. support for the Yemen war and the absence of the Palestinian issue from the normalisation agreement among Israel, the UAE and Bahrain. Crisis Group's Senior Analyst for Ethiopia, Will Davison, also joins them to discuss the challenges facing Ethiopia.

Hold Your Fire: Israel, the UAE, and Normalisation

In this podcast series, Crisis Group President Rob Malley and Board Member Naz Modirzadeh, a Harvard professor of international law and armed conflict, dive deep into the conflicts that rage around the globe, along with Crisis Group field analysts and special guests. In this first episode, Naz and Rob talk about the role foreign policy played, or didn’t, at the Democratic and Republican National Conventions, and explain why the U.S. attempt to snap back UN sanctions on Iran was met with a collective shrug internationally. 

The United Arab Emirates in the Horn of Africa

The UAE, together with its ally Saudi Arabia, played a highly visible role in helping make peace between Eritrea and Ethiopia. As its footprint across the Horn of Africa grows, the UAE should avoid having intra-Gulf competition colour its engagement. 

Also available in العربية
Report / Africa

Somalia and the Gulf Crisis

The quarrel between Gulf monarchies has spilled into Somalia, with the fragile state now caught between the rival interests of Qatar and the United Arab Emirates. The competition has already aggravated intra-Somali disputes. All sides should take a step back before these tensions mount further.

Also available in العربية