Mahra Witnesses First Popular Movement to Thwart Qishn Port Deal

The people of Mahra province on Monday started mobilizing against the deal to lease the port of Qishn, located on the Arabian Sea, in eastern Yemen, to an Emirati company.

local sources in the province told “Yemeni Press Agency” that tribal groups from the people of Mahra flocked to the port of Qishn, to protest against the lease of the port for 50 years to the Emirati company “AJHAM Energy and Mining” to practice mining activity in the Sherwin mountains, which are rich in precious and rare minerals.

The sources reported that the tribes are in the process of organizing a mass protest in the port of Qishn, in rejection of the deal, which was described as “a violation and abandonment of Yemeni sovereignty.”

The move comes after a wide local popular resentment, rejecting the plundering of sovereign wealth in Yemen by foreign companies.

Head of the political department in the Peaceful Sit-in Committee in Mahra, Saeed Afri, has accused what he called “brokers” of standing behind the port’s leasing deal.

Afri explained that the project would prevent the fishermen of the province from entering the sea to get their livelihood, and would expose the people of the city to the largest pollution that causes the spread of various diseases due to the remnants of drilling in Sherwin Mount.

The government loyal to Saudi-led coalition countries, headed by Moein Abdulmalik, has recognized a deal to lease the historic port of Qishn in Mahra province, eastern Yemen, to an Emirati company.

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