Ancient Yemen 

The use of camels as beasts of burden helped to develop land routes in Arabia in the eleventh century BC. Frankincense was transported from its production centre at Qana (now known as Bir 'Ali) to Gaza in Egypt. Gold and other valuables that came to Qana by sea from India were also brought by the camel caravans. 

The Minaeans were the main traders of incense; they founded their capital at Karna (modern-day Sadah) and were replaced in 950 BC by the Sabaeans. Ma'rib, the Sabaean capital, was the site of a huge temple. The powerful Sabaean civilization, which flourished for roughly 14 centuries, was centred on both agriculture and the commerce in spices. The striking dam was constructed at Ma'rib inthe eighth century, supplied agricultural irrigation, and endured for more than a thousand years. There are also a few surviving Sabaean carved inscriptions from this era.

The Sabaean empire was progressively assimilated by the Himyarites, who made Dhafar, which is now a small town in the Ibb region, their capital. They traded from the Red Sea port of al-Muza and were culturally inferior to the Sabaeans. The region had been taken over by the Romans by the first century BC. The major ancient civilizations of Egypt, Mesopotamia, and the Mediterranean region grew in importance, and historic Yemen played a significant role in the overland trade between these societies and the highly valued luxury commodities of South Arabia and other eastern and southern regions. Consequently, a number of pre-Islamic trading kingdoms expanded.astride a trade route for incense that stretched northwest between the edge of the desert and the foothills. First there was the Minaean monarchy, which flourished mostly from the trade of spices and frankincense and ruled from approximately 1200 to 650 BC. Established in the 10th century BC, the vast and affluent kingdom of Saba' (Sheba) was renowned for its effective agricultural and enormous irrigation system, which was centred around a sizable dam erected at Ma'rib. Among its rulers was Bilqis, the queen of Sheba.

The kingdoms of Qataban and Hadhramaut, located in what would eventually become South Yemen, were situated further south and east and were also involved in the incense trade. Himyar was the last of the great pre-Islamic kingdoms, which lasted roughly from the first century BC to the 500s AD. The majority of ancient Yemen was ruled by the Sabaean and Himyarite kingdoms at their height.

The ancient Yemeni governments and communities were so well-known and prosperous that they were collectively referred to as Arabia Felix in Latin, which means "Happy Arabia." But the Red Sea became the main route for Roman trade when they conquered Egypt in the first century BC. The southern Arabian kingdoms lost a great deal of their wealth and faded into obscurity when the trade routes declined. Yemen's seaborne trade had minimal effect on the country's interior, despite Red Sea traffic passing by.

The Tihamah region, shrouded in smog, scorching and muggy, tornado-tossed ,whilst having rather lush, populated highlands with plenty of water. The Christian Abyssinian kingdom (modern-day Ethiopia) occupied Yemen in the fourth and early sixth centuries AD, and the Sassanids of Persia occupied it in the later half of the sixth century, shortly before Islam emerged. These occupations were made possible by the weak Yemeni regimes that succeeded the trading kingdoms.

The Rise Of Islam  

Many significant events that shaped Yemen and the Yemeni people occurred throughout the Islamic era, which started in the seventh century. Yemen was quickly and completely converted to Islam as a result of the power with which Islam spread from its birthplaces in Mecca and Medina in the neighbouring Al Hijaz (the Hejaz) region. Among the earliest Muslims to march out of Arabia and into the west, east, and north was a sizable Yemeni population.

The Islamic era, which began in the seventh century, saw a number of important events that affected Yemen and the Yemeni people. The power with which Islam spread from its birthplaces in Mecca and Medina in the adjacent Al Hijaz (the Hejaz) region led to Yemen's swift and total conversion to Islam. A significant portion of the Yemeni population was among the first Muslims to march out of Arabia and into the west, east, and north.

The towns and tribes of the northern highlands and the Zaydi Shiite branch of Islam were deeply and permanently linked in the tenth century with the founding of the Zaydi imamate, basically a theocracy, in the far north of Yemen. In contrast, the coastal areas and the southern uplands were associated with Shafi'i Islam throughout the two centuries that the Rasulids ruled, starting in the 1200s and initially centred at Aden. One of the most important dynasties in Yemeni history, the Rasulids, separated from the Egyptian Ayyubid dynasty to establish their own independent kingdom. Their capital was renowned for its wide range of intellectual and artistic accomplishments and was eventually situated at Ta'izz.

The Civil War 

Political unrest swiftly followed the election's triumph. Vice President al-Beidh left Sanaa for Aden in August 1993 and stopped taking part in politics. This came after his trip to the US, during which he reportedly met with Vice President Al Gore without President Saleh's approval. Al-Beidh, from his base in Aden, sent out a list of demands for his return to Sanaa. The vice president stated that since unification, the YSP has been the target of political violence perpetrated by the north. Al-Beidh also objected to what he saw as the south's growing economic marginalisation.

Even after numerous foreign government delegates attempted intensive mediation, the impasse continued into the latter months of 1993. A Document of Pledge and Agreement, which called for a comprehensive assessment of the country's economic programmes and aims as well as a six-month dispute between Yemen's president and vice president, was initialled by the country's main political parties in January 1994. The two presidents signed the pact in February, but military confrontations broke out almost immediately. In an attempt to persuade the parties to follow their peace accord, Oman and Jordan suspended their mediation efforts in April. Significant combat between northern and southern forces later that month in 'Amran, north of Sanaa, signalled the end of the Yemeni union.

Early in May, Yemen descended into a full-fledged civil war. Missile assaults were launched by both sides into and out of Sanaa and Aden. Al-Beidh declared on May 21 that the South will secede from the Republic of Yemen and create the Democratic Republic of Yemen (DRY). The DRY put together a government that resembled a united Yemen, and a five-person Presidential Council chose al-Beidh to be president. In the meantime, Saleh removed some YSP party members from Yemen's administration in an effort to lessen al-Beidh's influence.

June saw more fighting, most of which was concentrated around the port cities of Al Mukalla and Aden. Attacks on oil stations were conducted by both sides, and a large amount of infrastructure was destroyed or seriously damaged. Early in July, Saleh's northern forces made a last offensive on Aden and Al Mukalla after a failed Russian cease-fire agreement, ultimately defeating the DRY army. All of the erstwhile South Yemen was under Saleh's authority by the middle of July.

Rebuilding Yemen's economy and government was a challenge for Saleh's administration following the fall of the DRY. The most severely damaged infrastructure was found in and around Aden, including communications hubs, oil refineries, and water systems. Aden saw the diagnosis of over 100 cases of cholera in July, partly as a result of the city's water scarcity.

The Yemeni legislature adopted many significant amendments to the 1990 unification constitution in September 1994. On October 1, Saleh declared himself officially re-elected as president, and he named AbdRabbuh Mansur Hadi as his new vice president. Yemeni leaders worked hard in the spring of 1995 to create and carry out an economic austerity programme that was demanded by many international economic organisations in an effort to revitalise the nation's economy.

The governments of Yemen and Saudi Arabia decided to start talks in February 1995 in an effort to resolve their long-running disagreement over their shared border. The deal calmed a potentially volatile situation because, only a few months prior, Yemen and Saudi Arabia had fought in the area. Negotiations were still ongoing as of May 1996, but no formal border had been agreed upon by the two parties.

Greater Hanish Island, strategically placed at the mouth of the Red Sea, was taken from Yemeni troops stationed there in December 1995 by Eritrea, which is located across the Red Sea from Yemen. In the fighting, at least 12 persons lost their lives. The Hanish Islands are claimed by both Yemen and Eritrea, who gained independence recently. Plans for a resort in Yemen on Hanish al Kabir are said to have initiated the attack. The two nations had agreed to a ceasefire by May 1996 and to arbitrate the dispute over island ownership.

Government: Prior to unification, South Yemen operated as a centralised socialist party-state, while North Yemen was ruled by a mild authoritarian government under military control. With the establishment of the Republic of Yemen in 1990, politics became more accessible, and the quantity of parties, advocacy organisations, and media outlets operating freely increased. The unification administration, which lasted for thirty months, was predicated on the former ruling parties of North and South Yemen, the General People's Congress (GPC) and the Yemeni Socialist Party (YSP), sharing equal power.

The transition phase ended with an open and fiercely contested national election held in April 1993. The GPC, the YSP, and the conservative Islamic Reform Grouping (al-Islah) formed a coalition government, with the GPC holding almost all of the cabinet positions. The majority of Yemenis cast ballots in the 1993 election, which was the first multiparty election held on the Arabian Peninsula and the first in which women were allowed to vote.

The 301-member elected Council of Deputies was established under the 1990 constitution, which was modelled after the constitution of North Yemen from 1970. Apart from its legislative duties, the council would choose a five-person Presidential Council and cast votes on the cabinet's makeup and agenda. The Prime Minister would be nominated by the Presidential Council, which would also select the president and vice president from among its members.

The president and vice president, as well as the members of the Council of Deputies, would be chosen to serve five-year terms. Following the conclusion of the nation's civil war in September 1994, the Council of Deputies resolved to enact significant amendments to the unity constitution. The revised constitution states that all laws must adhere to Islamic Sharia, or basic law, and characterises the economy as market-driven. The five-member Presidential Council was also eliminated by the reforms, which also mandated that all people be eligible to vote for the presidency and that no one be allowed to serve more than two terms in office.

Yemeni Coffee's Historical Background

Although Yemen is frequently cited as the location where coffee really took off, many experts contend that Ethiopia is the country's birthplace. One of the most well-known coffee flavours that many of us love even has its name from one of this African nation's ports. That's how crucial Yemen has been to the cup of coffee you might be sipping right now.

Yemeni coffee's history started with Sufi monks. These monks grew and brewed some of the first coffee circa 1450. It is said that the remainder of the area was subsequently affected by these monks' enthusiasm for this novel beverage. The outcomes were evident regardless of the veracity of this tale. Yemen rose to prominence in the coffee industry.

What’s the Most Famous Yemen Coffee City?

Yemen is undoubtedly no longer the global leader in coffee production, but that doesn't mean its legacy isn't being felt today. The most well-known Yemeni coffee city is arguably best recognised for naming one of the most well-liked coffee flavours worldwide: mocha.

Mocha, widely referred to as al-Mukha, is a port city on Yemen's southwest border that faces the Red Sea. Established in the 1300s, Mocha served as the centre of the European coffee trade during the 1700s, but even in the early days of Yemen's coffee trade, the city was well-known for its coffee exports.

As we've already mentioned, the monks contributed to the globalisation of coffee consumption. Given that the majority of Yemini coffee was shipped from the port at Mocha, it made sense for the local coffee to adopt the port's name, giving rise to the well-known flavour mocha.


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