Hadi Reshuffles Army in Preparation for Escalation Against Houthis

Hadi Reshuffles Army in Preparation for Escalation Against Houthis

Friday, 9 November, 2018 - 13:15
Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi
Aden - Asharq Al-Awsat
Yemeni President Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi ordered on Thursday the appointment of Mohammed al-Maqdashi as minister of defense, replacing Mahmoud al-Subaihi, who has been detained by the Iran-backed Houthi militias for four years now.

In his attempts to reshuffle the leadership of the Yemeni army, Hadi replaced current chief of staff, Major General Tahir al-Aqili with Abdullah al-Nakhii, while appointing the first as his military adviser.

A number of military observers suggested that Hadi has finally been convinced that the post of defense minister should not stay vacant after all attempts by the Houthi militias to release Subaihi have failed.

Commenting on Hadi's decision to appoint a new defense minister, Yemeni activists said they believe the move would facilitate regional efforts and mediation by the Houthis to release Subaihi since he is no longer a minister.

Maqdashi is a member of the Anas tribe from Dhamar province, located 100 kilometers south of Sanaa.

He had been appointed to many military posts in the past years.

Observers say that appointing him as defense minister is likely to facilitate the discipline within the army and help take decisive decisions on the field.

They suggest that Hadi's choice to appoint Nakhii and promote him to the rank of chief of staff would strengthen the geographical balance among the army's leaders.

He hails from southern Yemen and has a long history of military experience.

Aqili suffered an injury about a year ago and which likely made it difficult for him to continue in field work.

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