Yemen’s National Dialogue: Reshaping the Social Contract

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With Yemen’s National Dialogue firmly underway and a recent presidential directive appointing new military commanders, it is an appropriate moment to assess how far Yemen has come in its transition and what remains ahead.

The National Dialogue—the second phase of the internationally-backed initiative that led to the removal for former president Ali Abdullah Saleh—is tasked with addressing grievances in the South and Sa’ada, laying the foundation for a new constitution; developing a state-building strategy; and tackling issues of transitional justice, human rights, military restructuring, and the multitude of conflicts threatening Yemen’s transition. The agenda presents a daunting and monumental task—even in the most stable and secure environment, which Yemen is decidedly not—and one that is meant to be completed in a mere six months according to the transition plan.

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