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In a period of increased Russian assertiveness in the Middle East, Russia’s non-aligned stance toward the Yemeni war stood out distinctly. Following the conflict’s inception in 2014, Russia maintained diplomatic relations with both the Houthis and Yemen’s UN-recognized government, while resolutely opposing the Saudi Arabia-led military intervention in 2015. Although these policies set Russia apart from the international consensus, Moscow cautiously avoided miring itself in a protracted war. This chapter explores the antecedents for Russia’s solitary abstention vote on UN Security Council Resolution 2216 in April 2015, by analyzing the Russia-Yemen bilateral relationship under former president Ali Abdullah Saleh and Russia’s handling of the 2011 Yemeni revolution that heralded Abdurabbo Mansour Hadi’s presidency. It then examines Russia’s reaction to the outbreak of war and shifting positions on conflict resolution within the context of Moscow’s strategic interests in Yemen and regional power projection ambitions.
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- The Russian Role in the Yemen Crisis
- Chapter 6
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