MFO condemns death sentences against Yemeni journalists

The Media Freedom Observatory in Yemen has condemned the arbitrary sentences issued today by a Houthi group’s court against 10 Yemeni journalists arrested five years ago on the grounds of their journalistic work.

The specialized criminal court, “State Security”, has sentenced 4 journalists to death, namely, “Abdel-Khaleq Emran, Akram Al-Walidi, Harith Hamid and Tawfiq Al-Mansouri. and convicted the 10 journalists of charges against him, namely, Abdul-Khaleq Ahmed Emran, Akram Al-Walidi, Harith Hamid, Tawfiq Al-Mansouri, Hisham Tarumum, Hisham Al-Yousifi, Haytham Raweh, Issam Belghith, Hassan Annab and Salah Al-Qaidi.

The Observatory emphasized that these unjust verdicts are clearly politicizing the judiciary and an insistence by the Houthi group to continue its policy of muzzling mouths, stifling media freedom, and abusing journalists and opinion leaders opposing them.

The specialized criminal court, “State Security”, has convicted the 10 journalists of broadcasting fake news and data so as to weaken the nation’s defense force and the morale of the people, disturb public security, and harm the public interest by creating websites, electronic pages, and activity via social media.

These unjust verdicts came after the Houthi group had practiced multiple types of abuses against the abducted journalists over the past years.

The observatory held the Houthi group and the institutions under its control responsible for the life and safety of the 10 journalists, and called for the immediate release of them and all the abducted and forcibly disappeared.

The Observatory appealed to the High Commissioner for Human Rights, the United Nations, the International Federation of Journalists and all media organizations supporting free expression and opinion and human rights organizations to condemn these arbitrary sentences and exert pressure to release the abducted journalists and hold perpetrators punishable.