Currently, internal political divisions in the country to destabilize

Currently, Yemen is serving an ever more growing interest to both of these nations where  an Iranian official stated to Reuters on March 22, 2017: “Yemen is where the real proxy war is going on, and winning the battle in Yemen will help define the balance of power in the Middle East.”To further understand the growing conflict and the state of the proxy war between Iran and Saudi Arabia, we must understand the currently developing Yemeni Civil war and how each nation is taking advantage of it, to further their own political agendas. To do so we must understand the political and historical context that lead them to take such sides in the Civil war.When looking over Yemen as a state, it has always maintained a fragile domestic and foreign policy, were hostile foreign actors continuously use Yemen’s weak state to further their own regional ambitions and agendas. The United States and Saudi Arabia have partnered with the legitimate government of Yemen to fight transnational terrorist groups and promote regional stability, ( as least this is the public consensus used to justify continuous foreign intervention. Hostile actors such as Iran, however, have used internal political divisions in the country to destabilize Yemen and use it as a base to threaten Saudi territory, as well as disrupt vital commercial shipping lanes. As Iran realizes that Yemenis political and economic state poses a major threat to domestic Saudi security. Saudi leaders have long advocated a policy of ‘containment and maintenance in the case of Yemen, where enough support is given to whichever regime is in power in Sana’a to prevent state collapse, but a certain level of state dysfunction is viewed as attractive. ‘Keep Yemen weak’, King Abdulaziz is reputed to have said on his deathbed. This can be explained as Saudi Arabia’s attempt to maintain regional hegemony. By allowing Yemen to grow politically can threat that goal and national Saudi security. However even though Saudi Arabia continuously attempts to limit growth in Yemen, Riyadh(capital of Saudi Arabia) is aware of the impact that state collapse in Yemen would have on Saudi Arabia. Saudi policy-makers have long worried that the economic crisis in the Arabian Peninsula’s poorest and second most populous state. As a state of collapse in Yemen. could lead to an influx of Yemeni economic migrants. This is the very reason why Yemen, while on the verge of collapse. A good example of the negative relations that precedes Yemen and Saudi Arabia, Riyadh is currently building a 1,500-km fence that is set along the length of the Saudi–Yemeni border, aimed at stemming and decrease the flow of economic migrants, smugglers, and militant Islamists. Another reason why Saudi Arabia is concerned of the domestic state of Yemen is simply that Yemen acts as an easy target for Iran to increase influence over the Gulf region. Saudi Arabia holds hegemonic power over the Gulf region through extensive control over organizations that the Gulf region is largely dependent on to maintain their political and economic state specifically through  OPEC. Iran has a relatively easy path in Yemen as Iran shares a common faith with the Houthi rebels, located in the north of Yemen, The Houthis in Yemen can act as an outlet for Iranian influence of the region, giving Iran sold foothold in the Gulf. By siding up with the rebels and aiding them in any way shape or form based on their common sect of Islam. They potentially hold strategic grounds close to Saudi Arabia and its capital.Yemeni civil war and Iranian-Saudi intervention:-Yemen’s war unfolded over several years, beginning with the Arab Spring in 2011. Pro-democracy protesters took to the streets in a bid to force President Ali Abdullah Saleh to end his dictator-like rule that lasted for 33 years. President Saleh responded with economic concessions granting basic living requirements for the opposition(being made up mostly by people from southern parts of Yemen) but refused to leave his position of authority. However, these “peaceful” protest quickly escalated when the march of 2011 saw the legal Yemeni military shooting protesters, where after one of the most prominent military generals sided with the opposition, the streets of Yemen saw many skirmishes between the military and militia groups. After months of civil unrest the UN brokered a deal which allowed the transfer of power to the vice president Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi in which he became the leader of the new legitimate government of Yemen, however, due to his attempts for social and economic reforms, caused an outcry from the Houthis residing in the north of Yemen, underscoring that major civil struggle only started when there was economic reform, which is important as the Houthis are considered an Islamic terrorist group. Civil conflict continued in the coming years, where both the political and humanitarian crisis( food and medical shortages and rising civilian death toll) in 2015 the Saudi-led coalition started with the bombing of Sana’a(the capital of Yemen) officially mark the start of the Yemeni civil war. While there was growing conflict in Yemen before 2015, Saudi Arabia only intervened once the houthis posed as a threat. Saudi Arabia and other Sunni states have accused the Houthis of being a proxy for Iran, the region’s Shiite superpower. The Houthis themselves deny this.  Where they mascaraded there political agenda which is to control and maintain the domestic situation of Yemen as a manner of humanitarian intervention as means to combat the humanitarian crisis that is outgoing in Yemen. This can be legally justified and operated under operation “restoring hope”,where Saudi Defence Ministry declared it was ending the campaign of airstrikes because it had “successfully eliminated the threat” to its security posed by Houthi ballistic and heavy weaponry.after  operation that followed suit for Operation Decisive Storm, what makes this argument fall apart is that there has been continuous international humanitarian laws that Saudi Arabia violated. Where the naval blockade and the closure of many of the outlets of Yemen had if any, negative political or economic effects the Houthi  forces, but humanitarian officials and advocates warned of the blockade’s effects on Yemeni citizens. In the days and weeks following the November 4 closure, food and fuel supplied in northern Yemen dwindled,(15) and gas and water prices skyrocketed, leading international aid agencies to warn of impending famine. On November 20, the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (Fews Net) issued an alert, warning that “if all ports remain closed, or re-open but are unable to support large-scale imports of essential goods, Famine is likely in many areas of the country within three to four months. In less accessible areas with the most severe current food insecurity, Famine could emerge even more quickly.” During the blockade, aid agencies announced that five cities had run out of clean water (Sa’ada, Taiz, Hodeida, Sana’a and al Bayda). Humanitarian agencies decried the closures, asserting that the Saudi-led coalition was violating international law by using starvation as a weapon. However, the Saudi-led coalition claimed that it was acting legally, citing Paragraph 14 of UNSCR 2216, which calls on states to take measures to prevent the supply of military goods to the Houthis. it does not appear to represent a core security interest of Iran, but Iranian leaders appear to perceive Yemen’s instability as an opportunity to acquire an additional leverage against Saudi Arabia and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states. Yemen’s elected leaders have long claimed that Iran is trying to take advantage of Yemen’s instability by a Zaydi Shia movement known as the “Houthis” (Ansar Allah) with arms and other aids. Even though there is lesser support for Houthis by Iran than that in Iraq and Syria, a senior Iranian official reportedly told journalists in December 2014 that the IRGC-QF has a “few hundred” personnel in Yemen training Houthi fighters. Iran reportedly has shipped unknown quantities of arms to the Houthis, as has been reported by a panel of U.N. experts assigned to monitor Iran’s compliance with U.N. restrictions on its sales of arms abroad. Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) have provided the Houthis with money, training, and sophisticated weaponry for more than a decade, according to the U.S. State Department. The Revolutionary Guard is believed to have transferred rocket and missile capability as well. “Iran continues to provide arms to the Houthi forces, despite a U.N. Security Council resolution prohibiting such actions,” said Senator Bob Corker to the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations on March 9, 2017. “Houthis have used these weapons to attack U.S. ships off of the Yemeni coast, and they are launching missiles across the border into Saudi Arabia.” Many bring the question how can Iran be able to support the houthis, with extensive security measures implemented by the Saudi-led coalition to Yemeni outlets. As Saudi-led coalition set up a no fly zone with a naval blockade restricting movements through the sea, with a limited number of ports open, with extensive security of border security for all countries bordered with Yemen. However  a US official has stated that many of the smuggles that occur comes through the border of Oman, overland  taking advantage of porus lands. Where the same official told to reuters:”We have been concerned about the recent t flow of weapons from iran to yemen and have conveyed those concerns to those who maintain relations with the Houthis including the Omani government” While Oman denies any weapons smuggling across its border, it does not necessarily mean they are directly involved with the smuggling, but inclined to turn a blind eye to this. In this conflict, Oman considers itself a “friend to all” where Oman is the only Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) country that has not declared its participation in the Arab coalition. And continuously maintained its neutral stance. Instead of intervening in the conflict Oman is said to act as the mediator between the disputing parties. However is is concerning specially that they have deviated out of this policy as sources suggest that Oman has harbored Houthi rebels and facilitated crucial communication branches between Yemen and Iran. Also former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh greatly appreciates Oman’s stance. A Houthi-affiliated negotiation convoy and Saleh were welcomed in Oman’s capital the same Year. Its clear to say that Oman unofficially siding with Iran.