Abd Al-Karim Al-Iryani

Abdul Karim Ali Al-Iryani or Al-Eryani (i/ˈæbdʊl kɑːˈrm æl ɪrˈɑːni/; Arabic: عبد الكريم علي يحيى محمد عبد الله الإرياني; 12 October 1934 – 8 November 2015) was the Prime Minister of Yemen from 29 April 1998 to 31 March 2001. Al-Eryani, along with President Ali Abdullah Saleh, was a member of the General People's Congress (GPC).


Born in Eryan, a village in the central highlands of Ibb, in 1934, Al-Iryani belonged to a prominent family that had held government posts in the region for centuries; many of his ancestors and relatives were judges.[1] He studied in the United States, receiving a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture from the University of Georgia in 1962, a Master of Science in Agriculture from the same institution in 1964, and a Ph.D. in Biochemical Genetics from Yale University in 1968.

Before Yemen's unification, Al-Iryani served in the government of North Yemen as Minister of Development (1974–1976), Minister of Education (1976–1978), Prime Minister (1980–1983), and Minister of Foreign Affairs (1984–1990).[2] Following unification in 1990, Al-Iryani continued to serve as Minister of Foreign Affairs for the united Republic of Yemen until 1993, when he became Minister of Development briefly before returning to the post of Minister of Foreign Affairs in 1994. Al-Iryani was appointed as Prime Minister after Faraj Said Bin Ghanem abruptly resigned on 29 April 1998. He served in this capacity until 31 March 2001, when he was succeeded by Abdul Qadir Bajamal.

Al-Iryani was a member of the Global Leadership Foundation, a non-profit organisation set up in 2004 by FW de Klerk to support good governance and reduce conflict around the world. He has been credited with brokering the Arab Spring peace negotiations in 2012, resulting in a transition plan for President Saleh to resign.[3]

Al-Iryani died on 8 November 2015 in Frankfurt. Mustapha Noman, a former ambassador to Spain, called him "the last statesman Yemen had, and will have, for another generation."[1]


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Political offices
Preceded by
Abdul Aziz Abdul Ghani
Prime Minister of Yemen Arab Republic
Succeeded by
Abdul Aziz Abdul Ghani
Preceded by
Faraj Said Bin Ghanem
Prime Minister of Yemen
Succeeded by
Abdul Qadir Bajamal
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