Southern Yemen: Location, History, Size, Population, & Government

About the location, size, population, and government of the country Southern Yemen.

Southern Yemen (Aden)

Size--111,074 sq. mi. (287,682 sq. km.).

Population--1,600,000: Mostly Arab and Muslim with some Indian, Somali, Christian, Hindu, and others.

Who Rules--A 3-person presidential council with a ministerial form of government. On the regional and local levels, locally selected committees direct the activities of the various agricultural and fishing cooperatives.

Who REALLY Rules--The Central Committee of the Marxist-Leninist National Liberation Front. Most of the top government people are members of the 30-person Central Committee. South Yemen is economically in a very dire situation, since no development took place under British rule. The Soviet Union, China, and Iraq give aid, but the Front has kept this aid balanced in such a way that no one of these states exercises control over South Yemen.

Aida Yafe'i, the only woman who is a full member of the Central Committee of the Front and also on the 5-person Secretariat that directs the daily business of the Front, has described the situation of women: "Here, too frequently, the progressiveness of some men in the Front stops at their doorsteps. They still consider women as property. We don't blame men personally for this. We recognize it as an illness that pervades the whole society."

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