The Muslim Brotherhood has always dealt with developments of the political scene through maneuvering and duplicity; this was clearly reflected during the visit of leaders of al-Islah, the Yemeni branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, to the UAE.
The United Arab Emirates’ powerful Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed met with Mohammad Abdullah al-Yadomi, president of al-Islah’s supreme council, and Abdulwahab al-Ansi, the party’s secretary general, in Abu Dhabi.
The visit came after the Qatar intelligence reduced its finance to the Muslim Brotherhood party in Yemen, however, observers see this as a maneuver by Qatar to enroot al-Islah deeper into the future Yemeni scene.
Moreover, cutting Qatari funds to al-Islah will not prevent Doha from funding its media arms.
A US report revealed a new Qatari scheme in Yemen, pointing out that Doha is drawing a new outline for the political scene in Yemen through an unannounced alliance between the Houthis and the Muslim Brotherhood in Yemen.
Since the Houthis first emerged as a political force in 2004, Qatar has capitalized on political instability in Yemen to bolster its influence over the country’s internal affairs, Al Monitor reported.
Although Qatar officially sidelined its independent ambitions in Yemen after it normalized relations with its Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) rivals in November 2014, Doha’s desire for increased influence in Yemen has resurfaced in recent months.
To facilitate the Yemen conflict’s transition to a peace settlement and increase Doha’s leverage in Yemen, Qatar has actively obstructed the Saudi-led coalition’s military activities by balancing close relations with Houthi and Islah factions.
The report further added that since the inception of the Saudi-led blockade against Qatar last June, Doha has been accused of providing material and moral support to Houthi rebels.
Qatar’s subsequent provisions of $20 million in humanitarian assistance to rebel-held regions of Yemen in April 2018 caused additional controversy, as the Houthis have been accused of illicitly using revenues from their occupation of Hodeidah to fund military operations.
While allegations of Qatari financial assistance to Houthi rebels are admittedly based on circumstantial evidence, Doha’s critics in the Arab world have stridently condemned Qatari state media coverage of Houthi military activities.
Yemeni political analyst Nizar Haitham told The Reference in an interview that the Muslim Brotherhood has always been known of being opportunist, exploiting and taking advantage of its surroundings to achieve its schemes and goals.
He also added that Qatar is sponsoring an unannounced alliance between the Muslim Brotherhood and the Houthis in Yemen; it allows Muslim Brotherhood’s maneuvers to guarantee its existence in the Yemeni scene, especially with the fall of Houthis.
The Islah party is known to change its political stands more often, however, the Qatari regime is deemed its top ally, according to Haitham, in addition to Turkey and Iran, the official sponsors of groups and militias in Yemen and the region.
Haitham further clarified that a role is now being played by Islah that has been claiming rapprochement with the Arab coalition, while maintaining its strong relations with Qatar, Turkey and Iran to preserve its gains in the future Yemeni chain of authority.
He added that history warns against the Muslim Brotherhood, as Al-Islah was the only party that objected the idea of a united Yemen in 1990, and today, they seek to claim a new position in the Yemeni authority by striking deals with Houthis.