Tribesmen have played an important role in liberating the Abyan districts of Lawdar, Mudiyah and al-Wadea from al-Qaeda and are now helping Yemeni forces to maintain security, local officials told Al-Mashareq.
Security and army forces on Wednesday (September 13th) announced the recapture of al-Wadea district from al-Qaeda.
A few days later, Yemeni forces entered Lawdar and Mudiyah, where they clashed with al-Qaeda gunmen, killing a number of them and arresting others, while the rest fled.
"Tribesmen have played a positive role in these efforts," Abyan governor Maj. Gen. Abu Bakr Hussein Salem said during a meeting with local tribal chiefs on Tuesday (September 19th).
During his field tour of al-Wadea and Mudiyah on Tuesday, Salem praised the role of tribal leaders in supporting the efforts of local authorities and security forces in establishing security and defeating terror groups, local media reported.
"The co-operation of citizens and dignitaries has been reflected in the establishment of security and the rejection of terrorist elements who have spread corruption in the land," Salem said.
Salem also inspected civil services departments during his visit, including the Mudiyah Court, the local council office, the electricity office, Mudiyah Hospital, and the security directorate.
In al-Wadea district, he visited the Public Telecommunication Corporation building and al-Wadea Hospital.
Tribes foster environment receptive to Yemeni military
The security and military campaign that was launched last month aims to rid Abyan's districts of extremists, "especially the central districts which have suffered as a result of the absence of military and civil state institutions", said Abyan local council member Abdul Majeed al-Salahi.
The military campaign can only succeed with the support of tribal leaders and tribesmen who create an environment that is receptive to security and army forces and hostile to terrorist elements, he told Al-Mashareq.
"The absence of military and civil state institutions has given terrorist elements a chance to return," he said.
Current efforts focus on "normalising the situation and activating the role of civil institutions" after these areas are cleared of gunmen, he added.