Population: 26 052 966

GDP: 45 450 000 000.00 $



North Yemen became independent of the Ottoman Empire in 1918. The British, who had set up a protectorate area around the southern port of Aden in the 19th century, withdrew in 1967 from what became South Yemen. Three years later, the southern government adopted a Marxist orientation. The massive exodus of hundreds of thousands of Yemenis from the south to the north contributed to two decades of hostility between the states. 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.



In 2000, Saudi Arabia and Yemen agreed to a delimitation of their border. Fighting in the northwest between the government and the Huthis, a Zaydi Shia minority, began in 2004 and has since resulted in six rounds of fighting - the last ended in early 2010 with a cease-fire. The southern secessionist movement was revitalized in 2008 when a popular socioeconomic protest movement initiated the prior year took on political goals including secession.



Population: 26,052,966 (2014).


Nationality: noun: Yemeni(s), adjective: Yemeni.


Ethnic groups: predominantly Arab; but also Afro-Arab, South Asians, Europeans.


Languages: Arabic (official).


Religions: Muslim 99.1% (official; virtually all are citizens, an estimated 65% are Sunni and 35% are Shia), other 0.9% (includes Jewish, Baha'i, Hindu, and Christian; many are refugees or temporary foreign residents).



GDP: $ 45 450 000 000.00 (2014).


Military Organization


Land Forces; Naval and Coastal Defense Forces (includes Marines); Air and Air Defense Force (al-Quwwat al-Jawwiya al-Yemeniya); Border Guards; Strategic Reserve Forces.

Coast Guard was established in 2002.


Conflicts and Disputes


Saudi Arabia has reinforced its concrete-filled security barrier along sections of the fully demarcated border with Yemen to stem illegal cross-border activities.


Refugees (country of origin): 5,787 (Ethiopia) (2014); 244,404 (Somalia) (2015).


Internally displaced persons: 334,093 (conflict in Sa'ada governorate; clashes between AQAP and government forces) (2014).

Geographical Information and Map


Capital: Sanaa


Location: Middle East, bordering the Arabian Sea, Gulf of Aden, and Red Sea, between Oman and Saudi Arabia. Strategic location on Bab el Mandeb, the strait linking the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, one of world's most active shipping lanes


Geographic coordinates:

15 00 N, 48 00 E



total: 527,968 sq km

land: 527,968 sq km

water: 0 sq km

note: includes Perim, Socotra, the former Yemen Arab Republic (YAR or North Yemen), and the former People's Democratic Republic of Yemen (PDRY or South Yemen).


Land boundaries:

total: 1,601 km

border countries: Oman 294 km, Saudi Arabia 1,307 km.


Coastline: 1,906 km.


Natural resources: petroleum, fish, rock salt, marble; small deposits of coal, gold, lead, nickel, and copper; fertile soil in West.