Despite its ancient roots as the crossroads of Africa, the Middle East and Asia, the modern Republic of Yemen is a relatively new state.
It was created after communist South Yemen and traditional North Yemen merged in 1990, following years of strife.
Tensions remain between the north and the south, however. A southern separatist movement was defeated in a short civil war in 1994, and tensions re-emerged in 2009 when government troops and rebels, known as the Houthi, clashed in the north, killing hundreds and displacing more than a quarter of a million people.
A fresh wave of protests in 2011, inspired by the Arab Spring uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt, forced then-President Ali Abdallah Saleh to resign.
Yemen has also become a base for militant groups, like Al-Qaeda and Islamic State, adding to instability in the country. The country spiralled into civil war in 2014 and, despite peace initiatives, fighting continues.
The Beautiful Yemen You Have to Visit to Appreciate
- Republic of Yemen
- Capital : Sanaa
- Population 25.6 million
- Area 536,869 sq km (207,286 sq miles)
- Major language Arabic
- Major religion Islam
- Life expectancy 65 years (men), 68 years (women)
- Currency Yemeni riyal