NDF Rebellion

NDF Rebellion
Part of the Arab Cold War
CIA map of NDF activity in North Yemen.png
CIA map of the NDF area of operations in May 1982
Date1978 – 1982
(4 years)
North Yemen
Result Government victory
 North Yemen
Flag of Jihad.svg Islamic Front
Supported by:
 United States
 Saudi Arabia
Yemeni Socialist Party Flag.svg NDF
Supported by:
 South Yemen
 Soviet Union
Commanders and leaders
Yemen Arab Republic Ali Abdullah Saleh
Yemen Arab Republic Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar
Yemeni Socialist Party Flag.svg Yahya Shami
Yemeni Socialist Party Flag.svg Sultan Ahmad Umar [ar]
Abdul Fattah Ismail

The NDF Rebellion was an uprising in the Yemen Arab Republic by the National Democratic Front, under Yahya Shami,[2] between 1978 and 1982.[3]


1978 start[edit]

The rebellion began in 1978, following the death of Ahmad al-Ghashmi and the rise to power of Ali Abdullah Saleh.[3] The NDF was supported in its rebellion by the PDRY[3] and Libya.[2] The NDF enjoyed various successes throughout the war, although it was weakened by the peace treaty between North and South Yemen following the 1979 border war.[3]

There were several attempts at ceasefires between the government and the NDF. Kuwait managed to facilitate the signing of a ceasefire between the government and the NDF on 26 November 1981, although hostilities re-erupted in December 1981.[2] Later, the Palestinian Liberation Organization was able to mediate a ceasefire agreement on 3 April 1982, however hostilities began again later the same April, with the NDF capturing Juban. Government forces in turn attacked NDF positions in Juban in May 1982.

May 1982[edit]

PDRY support for the NDF diminished under the Presidency of the less overtly militant Ali Nasir Muhammad,[3] and PDRY support for the NDF finally ended in May 1982.[2] Dhamar, a major NDF stronghold, sustained major damage during the 1982 North Yemen earthquake.[4] The NDF was eventually defeated by a rejuvenated YAR Army in conjunction with the pro-government Islamic Front, allowing the YAR government to finally establish control over the North-South border region.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Foreign Policy in Focus, Yemen, the United States, and Al-Qaida. December 19, 2001, retrieved Sept. 19, 2009 Archived July 26, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ a b c d 10. Kingdom of Yemen/Yemen Arab Republic/North Yemen (1918-1990) - University of Central Arkansas
  3. ^ a b c d e f Burrowes, Robert D. (2010). Historical Dictionary of Yemen. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 252.
  4. ^ Press, The Associated (15 December 1982). "Earthquake Toll in Yemen Area Is Put at 1,082". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 30 November 2019.