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Commemorating the Unity of North and South Yemen: Yemen Celebrates National Unity Day

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Yemen Day of National Unity: May 22

Day of National Unity is a public holiday in Yemen.

Yemen holds annual celebration to commemorate the anniversary of the unity of South and North Yemen to form the Republic of Yemen on May 22. The National Unity Day in Yemen is a day where the country’s president talks about the plans laid out to address some of the pressing economic issues the country currently faces.

History of Yemen Day of National Unity

The present day Republic of Yemen is formed by the unification of two Arab states located in the Arab Peninsula: The Yemen Arab Republic (North Yemen) and the People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen (South Yemen). North Yemen was formed after the cessation of existence of the Ottoman Empire; South Yemen, on the other hand, was a previous British colony. The latter gained its independence from its colonial master after a violent struggle for independence in 1967.

The plan of a unified Yemen was conceptualized in 1972. Numerous attempts failed in 1979 due to regional conflicts but unity plans eventually came to commence in 1988.

The unification led to a joint mineral extraction exploration along the two countries’ undefined border and allows the citizens of both regions to enjoy unrestricted travel access on both lands.

Ali Abdullah Saleh (North Yemen) and Ali Salim al-Baidh (South Yemen) spearheaded the unity and approved the unity constitution in 1988 so that in May 22, 1990 a unity government was finally declared.

Yemen Day of National Unity: Traditions, Customs and Activities

During the celebration, the president of Republic of Yemen delivers speech and conduct military ceremony that commemorate the unification of the two Arab states in the Arabian Peninsula, Southwest Asia. It is during this national holiday where the president delivers national speech focusing on the government’s effort towards economic development, peace, and the challenges the country faces after the unification in 1990.

A formal celebration usually happens in the capital, Sana’a. National Unity Day is a bank holiday and work-free.

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