Waving flags of a country that once existed while chanting slogans of independence, thousands assembled in former capital city Aden and other cities that used to make up South Yemen on 27 April 2013, to commemorate the day the north declared war on their people and as some southerners say “occupied” their land in 1994.
The same day, the country's chief military advisor to the President issued a personal apology on Facebook to the people in the south for all “unjust wars” declared by former President Saleh's regime.
South Yemen was an independent socialist state that united with North Yemen in 1990 to form the present-day Republic of Yemen, with Ali Abdallah Saleh as the President of unified Yemen. In 1994, a disgruntled south Yemen demanded its secession from the north due to multiple grievances including its economic marginalization, which resulted in the north taking over south Yemen after a three-month long 1994 civil war.
General Ali Muhsin, the current Military and Security Advisor to President AbduRabu Hadi, who came to power after the Yemeni revolution which paved the for Saleh's exit in 2011, wrote in a Facebook post on his public profile [ar]:
في ذكرى حرب صيف 94 نتوجة بالاعتذار والأسف لإهلنا في جنوب اليمن شخصيا ، كما اعتذرنا لكل الأطراف في اليمن عن كل ممارسات النظام السابق من حروب ظالمة ، والاعتذار الحقيقي قدمه الشعب اليمني لنفسه حين قام بثورة سلمية قضت على طموحات التوريث التي تسببت في ظلم الكثير من ابناء الشعب اليمني جنوبه وشماله .. ون
On the anniversary of the 94 war, we send out an apology and regret to our people in the south of Yemen personally, and all parties in Yemen for all practices in the forms of unjust wars by the former regime; the real apology the Yemeni people presented to themselves when they had a peaceful revolution that eliminated the aspirations of inheritance which caused a lot of injustice to the Yemeni people, both in the north and in the south.
A New York-based human rights activist with Yemeni roots Summer Nasser (@SummerNasser) tweets:
@SummerNasser Ali Mohsen apologizes to the southern people for the war through FACEBOOK. Are you kiidddinnnggg meeeee #Yemen
Twitter user Hussein Al-Yafai (@crazyyafai), a student who lives between the U.S. and Yemen tweets:
@crazyyafai: General Ali Mohsen apologized today for waging a war on #SouthYemen, we want out land and resources back not an apology.
This video uploaded by YouTube user Radfan Almokafeh ردفان المكافح [ar] shows protesters coming out on the streets to mark the nineteenth anniversary of the day the north declared war on the south on April 27, 1994:
Al-Yafai who describes himself as a lover of human rights in Yemen adds:
@crazyyafai: On this date: April 27 1994 The northern regime declared war on #SouthYemen & turning the beautiful unity into an occupation
@crazyyafai: The results of the war were the occupation of #SouthYemen , taking all of its resources as spoils of war.