Potential Hot Spots: December 4, 1999


Armenian Army Major Vardan Gnuni (chief of the armaments department) was murdered by a bomb in his office on 9 Nov. An investigation is continuing.--Stephen V Cole

December 4; YEMEN reports several Saudi border incursions during the last few days, leaving two Yemeni soldiers dead and several wounded. The Saudis have not replied to the Yemeni claims. Yemeni President Saleh called for Saudi Arabia to agree to a deadline by which time the 1,300-mile border will be fully resolved. (This is, of course, simply rhetoric. How could a deadline have any meaning if no agreement has been reached? What "default border" would be imposed if there was no agreement in time?) The clashes reportedly took place in the al-Abar area of the eastern province of Hadramout. Fighting along the border happens a couple of times a year. The 1934 border agreement gave Saudi Arabia vast tracks of land that had long been claimed by Yemen, but left the precise border unmarked as there was nothing out there to fight over and any border markers would be wiped away by the wind (or moved by the local nomads whenever they found it convenient or amusing to do so).


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