An Opportunity in Crisis? Covid-19 and State-community Relations in Taiz


Authors: Raiman al-Hamdani and Mareike Transfeld

This report outlines the coronavirus response in Taiz, Yemen in 2021. The pandemic presented a great challenge to state institutions in Yemen, but it also presented an opportunity to improve cooperation between institutions, improve public relations, and to generate popular trust in local councils, as well as in security institutions.

The report highlights weaknesses both in terms of planning and implementation. Planners did not consider the interests of the community and communicated policies poorly. Although the response did not garner trust in state or security institutions, it did demonstrate that there is regular communication among local state institutions, including health and security. Political dynamics and economic interests of the security sector are important considerations required for successful policy implementation .

This report was created as part of the Yemen Policy Center’s project al-Siyasa al-Madaniya (funded by the Federal German Foreign Office) and was supported by the Political Settlement Research Programme through the Covid Collective Research Platform at IDS Sussex, with thanks to funding from the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office.

Other reports focusing on Covid-19, the conflict in Yemen, and considerations for broader inclusion:

Report 2: Pulling the Pieces Together: Health and community actors as levers of local response in Taiz and Hadhramaut, Yemen

Report 3: Peace and Conflict-Covid-19 Nexus: The Impact on Women’s Inclusion in the Peace Process in Yemen