Saleh family network

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Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh, who ruled for over three decades, placed family members in critical positions throughout Yemen’s security forces. Saleh’s son, Ahmed Ali Abdullah Saleh, commands Yemen’s elite paramilitary unit, the Republican Guard forces. These troops play a key role in protecting regime interests, particularly over the course of the Yemeni Spring. His nephew, Yahya Abdullah Saleh, heads the Central Security Forces. A U.S.-trained counter-terrorism unit is under Yahya’s command. Finally, his nephew, Tareq Mohammed Abdullah Saleh, commands the Presidential Guard and Saleh’s half-brother, Mohammed Saleh al Ahmar commands the Yemeni Air Force. Saleh’s reach extends beyond the military as well. Family members head national institutions such as the national airline, Yemenia Airways, and the Yemen Economic Corporation (YECO).

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About the Author

 

Katherine
Zimmerman
  • Katherine Zimmerman is a senior analyst and the al Qaeda and Associated Movements Team Lead for the American Enterprise Institute’s Critical Threats Project. Her work has focused on al Qaeda’s affiliates in the Gulf of Aden region and associated movements in western and northern Africa. She specializes in the Yemen-based group, al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, and al Qaeda's affiliate in Somalia, al Shabaab. Katherine has testified in front of Congress and briefed Members and congressional staff, as well as members of the defense community. She has written analyses of U.S. national security interests related to the threat from the al Qaeda network for the Weekly Standard, National Review Online, and the Huffington Post, among others. Katherine graduated with distinction from Yale University with a B.A. in Political Science and Modern Middle East Studies.


     


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    Email: katherine.zimmerman@aei.org

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