The source did not obtain the family name of Abdul Latif Al-Sayed’s successor, but said that his nickname is “Al-Yafai”

Military source: UAE appoints Security Belt commander

The recent departure of Abyan’s Security Belt commander, Abdul Latif Al-Sayed, is likely final, according to a military official in the governorate, who said that a successor has already been appointed behind the scenes. 

The UAE has allowed Al-Sayed and his family to depart Abu Dhabi, where they had been living, and relocate to Cairo until further notice, the source told Almasdar Online. 

The UAE is considering relieving Al-Sayed of his duties altogether in accordance with Riyadh agreement, which eased intense fighting between Yemen’s internationally recognized government and the pro-secession Southern Transitional Council (STC) in August in exchange for a power-sharing deal in the interim capital Aden.  

Al-Sayed, who supports the STC, was a key figure in those clashes. He is also a controversial figure due to his past relationship with Al-Qaeda-aligned forces in Abyan.

The UAE has appointed a leader to succeed Al-Sayed in Abyan, though the decision has yet to be announced publicly, according to the military official, who is familiar with decision-making on the implementation of the Riyadh agreement.

After his brigade’s defeat to government forces in Abyan in recent months, Al-Sayed has lost the desire to continue fighting there, the official said, particularly in light of the commander’s differences with a number of Security Belt officials in Aden and Abyan have surfaced.  

The official did not obtain the family name of Al-Sayed’s successor, but said that his nickname is “Al-Yafai” and that he is "known amongst the leadership" of the UAE-backed forces in Abyan.

The official added that it is unlikely that Al-Sayed will return before the Riyadh agreement is implemented, but he may be allowed to return when calm returns to the area.



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