Yemen's UAE-backed STC vows to take over Hadramawt
In a speech in Hadramawt’s capital city Mukalla, President of the National Assembly of the STC Ahmed bin Breik said the council will start to implement its own administration in the coming days.
"Hadramawt is a complement to the capital, Aden, in achieving self-management on the ground," he said.
He added: "The coming days, our efforts will be exerted in its implementation, whether in the absence or presence of the Yemeni government."
The internationally recognised government of Yemen is led by President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi, who has been exiled in the Saudi capital of Riyadh since 2015.
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Bin Breik urged that Hadramawt must be a part of an independent South Yemen.
"We cannot accept or give up our right to determine our destiny. We are moving towards the future of these generations and the future of our grandchildren," he said.
The southern separatists and the government are technically allies in the fight against the Houthi rebels, but the rift between them represents a damaging "war within a war" in the Arabian Peninsula's poorest country.
The STC declared self-rule on April 26, accusing the government of failing to carry out its duties.
The STC has made a series of military gains, the latest on Saturday when it seized control of the island of Socotra off the southern coast of Aden - located near strategic shipping lanes and famed for its biodiversity.