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The political and military instability, not to mention the overall humanitarian crisis, are enough to deter most western organizations and companies from entering Yemen.  Plagued with rebels, civil war, medicine shortages, and threats of famine, the small country poses a hostile environment for international organizations.  However, when organizations are forced to enter such environments, they can count on RMI to offer protection to their workforce.

Client Requirements

RMI successfully deployed a Western-trained security team that worked both as paramedics and close protection officers for a company that undertook a major infrastructure project in Yemen.  The project provided fiber optic internet access to the country. Protecting the crew executing the massive and costly project was essential.  The RMI security team was highly trained to provide both close protection, and emergency trauma care, which was important as the medical system in the area was unstable and unreliable.

Collaborating with Local Resources

This tricky environment required assessment, planning, and strategizing prior to deployment.  The RMI team entered the country a month in advance and leveraged existing relationships, while fostering new ones with the local police, military, the Mayor, and key stakeholders within the area.  The team gained the locals’ trust and demonstrated goodwill on behalf of RMI and the companies they represented.  By the time the project began, the RMI security team was accepted by the locals, attending birthday parties, learning how to cook local dishes, and engaging in local customs and celebrations.  Not only did the security team embrace the Yemeni lifestyle, they also worked hand-in-hand with the local military and police.

The RMI team trained daily with a local Yemen security team, participating in drills and upskilling each other on security and medical practices. The locals taught the RMI team everything they needed to know about the environment, from combat indicators and precursors to dangers, to what it meant when families weren’t playing in the streets or if shops close early.  In return, the RMI security team offered the locals medical and security training.  One of the local Yemen security officers saved his son’s life when his son was shot in the leg, utilizing the medical training the RMI security team provided him during the project!  The locals trusted the RMI security team and vice versa, which was crucial during day-to-day activities as well as to the extraction plans, should it have been needed.

Preparing for Extraction (if needed) 

Upon careful assessment and planning, RMI had several extraction plans ready to execute, ranging from methods by air, land, or sea and utilizing its connections with the Yemen, UK, and US military.  Luckily, no extraction plan had to be performed, and the team stayed safe throughout the project.  The client was so impressed with the RMI security team, they have since used RMI’s services on several projects throughout the Caribbean, Colombia, and Somalia.  This experience was a win for everyone involved.  

If your organization is considering entering a challenging environment, contact RMI for all your security and risk management needs.