Who are Houthis?

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Who are Houthis? Blog Image


Yemen's Iran-aligned Houthis have stepped up their attacks on commercial vessels transiting the Red Sea.

About Houthi

  • The Houthis, officially known as Ansar Allah (Partisans of God), are an armed religious and political movement in Yemen.
  • Houthis are Zaydi Shiites, or Zaydiyyah. Shiite Muslims are the minority community in the Islamic world, and Zaydis are a minority of Shiites, significantly different in doctrine and beliefs from the Shiites who dominate in Iran, Iraq, and elsewhere.
  • They are a minority in Yemen, which is predominantly Sunni Muslim, but they are a significant one, numbering in the hundreds of thousands and making up as much as a third of the overall population.
  • Its members advocate regional autonomy for Zaidis in northern Yemen.
  • They have been fighting Yemen’s Sunni-majority government since 2004. 
  • The Houthis took over the Yemeni capital Sanaa in September 2014 and seized control over much of north Yemen by 2016.
  • The Houthi movement began as an effort to maintain tribal autonomy in northern Yemen and protest Western influence in the Middle East.
  • Today, the Houthis seek a greater role in the Yemeni government and continue to advocate for Zaidi minority interests.
  • The movement is known for its virulently anti-American and anti-Semitic rhetoric.
  • Several of the group’s leaders have been designated as terrorists by the United States.

Q1) Which countries border the Red Sea?

Yemen and Saudi Arabia border the Red Sea to the east. It is bordered by Egypt to the north and west and by Sudan, Eritrea, and Djibouti to the west.

Source: Houthis escalate attacks on Red Sea as missile strike hits British fuel tanker in Gulf of Aden