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November 2015

Yemen

Yemen

Yemen faces a rare occurrence as Cyclone Chapala approaches from the Arabian Sea. This cyclone has sustained winds of 105 knots with gusts up to 130 knots. Cyclone Chapala is expected to make landfall southeast of Mukalla, Yemen.

Located on the southern tip of the Saudi Arabian Peninsula, Yemen is almost four times the size of Alabama. Surrounded by the Arabian Sea, Gulf of Aden, and the Red Sea, it also shares borders with Oman and Saudi Arabia. Although the country is mostly desert, it is also hot and humid along the west coast and temperate in the western mountains; it has an extraordinarily hot, dry, and harsh desert in the east. The natural resources of Yemen include: petroleum, fish, rock salt, marble, small deposits of coal, gold, lead, nickel, and copper.

North Yemen became independent from the Ottoman Empire in 1918. In 1967, the British withdrew from the port of Aden, thus creating South Yemen. The two countries were formally unified as the Republic of Yemen in 1990. A southern secessionist movement and brief civil war in 1994 was quickly subdued. Fighting in the northwest between the government and the Huthis began in 2004 and has since resulted in six rounds of fighting that ended in early 2010 with a cease-fire.

A southern secessionist movement was revitalized in 2008. The UN Security Council passed Resolution 2014 in October 2011 calling for an end to the violence and completing a power transfer deal. In late November 2011, the President signed the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Initiative to step down and transfer some of his powers to the Vice President. As of late April 2015, the Huthis controlled much of western Yemen.

A tropical cyclone is a storm in which the maximum sustained surface wind (using the U.S. 1-minute average) is 64 knots (74 mph or 119 km/hr) or more. The term hurricane is used for Northern Hemisphere tropical cyclones east of the International Dateline to the Greenwich Meridian. The term typhoon is used for Pacific tropical cyclones north of the Equator west of the International Dateline. For more information on storms around the world, visit the Joint Typhoon Warning Center or the NOAA Satellite and Information Service.

Joint Typhoon Warning Center; National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration; CIA World Factbook, 11/2015; 11/2015; 10/2015

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