February 07, 2013
Chart: Bani Helal Tribe Hierarchy
The Bani Helal is a large tribal group in northern Shabwah, which includes several sub-tribes. Geographic and genealogical proximity do not create harmony, however. Members of the Bani Atef, a Bani Helal sub-tribe, became embroiled in a feud in November 2012 with members of another Bani Helal sub-tribe due to a matter of a love affair between members of the respective groups, according to local reporting. This and other instances of inter- and intra-tribal fighting raise serious questions about the challenges posed by relying on local tribes to protect U.S. interests in Yemen.
Click graphic to enlarge.
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