1900-1919 | Collective punishments | Demolishing villages | Punitive operations | Uncategorized | Yemen

A ‘punitive expedition destroys Kotaibi villages in Yemen

[ 2 November 1903 ]

Following an attack by the Kotaibis on a British military outpost at Sulaik in Aden (today part of Yemen), an expedition composed of 600 soldiers of the Royal Hampshire Regiment and the 23rd Bombay Rifles under the command of General Maitland set off in to the hills on 30th October to inflict a harsh collective punishment on the entire population by destroying their villages. On the night of 2 November, they seized the main Kotaibi village of kariati, blowing up the buildings with gun-cotton. Over the next ten days the expedition then dedicated itself to destroying other villages in the area, before returning to Dhala on 15 November. A Reuters correspondent sent a brief report on the ‘punitive expedition’, concluding that ‘it is expected that the expedition will have a quietening effect on the Kotaibi and other tribes.’1


  1. ‘The Fighting Near Aden,’ The Manchester Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser, 21 November 1903, p. 15. See also ‘Fighting in the Aden hinterland 1901-1904,’ at url http://www.kaiserscross.com/304501/462522.html and The 1st Hampshire in Aden and Somaliland, The Royal Hampshire Regiment Museum website at url https://www.royalhampshireregiment.org/about-the-museum/timeline/aden-and-somaliland/

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