Wandering in Yemen

Yemeni Press Round-Up 22/10/13

Electricity: Bin Ka’lan Competes with Kalfoot for Most Hated Man in Yemen as Lights Go Out Again:

In the now regular ‘complete idiot (substitute for stronger word) attacks electricity infrastructure’ section of this round-up, Sana’a and many other Yemeni cities were plunged into darkness, once again, yesterday as a ‘Bin Ka’lan’ fella was accused by the government of attacking the electricity infrastructure in Yemen’s most hated, and most misunderstood, governorate of Marib. Masdar Online billed the attack as a direct challenge to the government as the ministers of defence and interior were both in Marib when the attack took place. Electricity powercuts are essentially the norm in Sana’a, negatives including that it is severely affecting businesses and hospitals, the silver lining being that the stars are really bright at night.

Mareb Press reports that the General Electricity Corporation is having difficulty fixing the problem, as there has been another attack on the power infrastructure in Marib in the early hours of the morning.

Presidential Adviser: No Cabinet Reshuffle:

Rajeh Badi, one of President Hadi’s advisers, said that rumours of a cabinet reshuffle are incorrect, and being spread by ‘people inside the National Unity government’ whose aims are known to the Presidential team.

He also commented on media reports surrounding the many foreign trips being conducted by ministers, saying that some ministers were on official trips that were for the benefit of the country, some were on holiday and paying out of their own pocket, but that there are some who are going on trips that are not important, and that these ministers will be warned that they will be banned from future travel, and their names will be released to the media [Masdar Online].

Southern Issue: NDC Herak ‘Agree’ to Drop Calls for Separation:

The Kuwaiti newspaper al-Qabs has reported that the Herak faction at the NDC has agreed to drop their calls for separation, and have agreed to the federal Yemeni state being composed of five provinces. This reportedly comes after secret meetings between Herak leaders and President Hadi in Aden.

Man Killed ‘by Security Forces’ in Aden:

Aden al-Ghad reports that Wajdi Ali Saeed, 30, was killed by security forces in the early hours of the morning, after he passed near their checkpoint on a motorbike, which caused them to be suspicious. Motorbikes have been involved in many assassinations recently. Saeed was apparently left unattended for a long time without receiving any medical care after he was shot.

Sara Ishaq: Karama Has No Walls ‘Edited’ for Oscars:

Sara Ishaq, the director of Yemen’s first Oscar shortlisted film, Karama Has No Walls, has said that the film had to be edited down from 46 minutes to 26 minutes after problems arose with people who were part of the film’s team. Ishaq said that some members of the team tried to blackmail her after the film began to do well in international film festivals, and therefore she had to remove the parts of the film that they were involved in.

“Me and my colleagues had one aim: to show the world what happened on the Friday of Dignity. Our aim was not fame or money, this film is the property of the martyrs of the revolution and their families, and it saddens me that some are using the film in their search for fame and money,” she said [Masdar Online].

14 Year Old Boy Kidnapped by Gang for 20 Days:

The family of Ashraf Abdullah Mahyoub, a 14 year old boy who was kidnapped twenty days ago, have called on the government to intervene and help them secure the release of their son. Ashraf was abducted whilst on his way to his village in Ibb by a gang who had previous issues with Ashraf’s family, and are now demanding 15 million Riyals for his release [Mareb Press].

Human Rights Organistations Call for Change in US Drone Policy:

Human Rights Watch and Karama have released reports calling for the United States to change its drone policy, which has targeted Yemen numerous times in the past year. The Human Rights organisations say that the drone strikes have killed civilians [Masdar Online].

Houthi-Salafi Clashes in Dammaj Latest:

Speaking to Mareb Press, the Salafi Sheikh Abu Ismael al-Wadi’i said that a jihad had been declared against the Houthis, and that his men would be setting up checkpoints to arrest Houthi armed men. He added that many tribesmen had answered his call for jihad, and that it was the Houthis who had broken the agreement between the two groups that was brokered by a mediation committee. He also added that the government had not done enough.

For their part, the Houthis accuse the Salafi ‘Takfiris’ of breaking the agreement, and continuing to shell Houthis positions [Ansaruallah.com]

Army Intervenes in Marib Oil Workers Protest:

Aden al-Ghad carries exclusive photos and videos of the Yemeni army putting down a protest by oil workers in Marib that has gone on for days. The workers are demanding changes to their holiday time, and other rights.

Aden al-Ghad also reports that oil workers in Aden are on strike.

Jawf Tribe Welcomes Presence of Oil Companies:

A tribal gathering of the Dehm tribe was organised to confirm that the tribe welcomed the presence of oil companies in al-Jawf governorate, reports Masdar Online. The tribal gathering said that the participants were willing to cooperate with the state to protect the companies and to provide the right environment for their work.

7 Deaths in Hajjah, Including 1 Soldier:

A soldier was killed in Hajjah governorate after a tribal party tried to pass an army checkpoint without stopping. Shooting started between the soldiers at the checkpoint and the tribesmen, and one person died on each side. The army arrested five of the tribesmen, whilst the rest got away.

In other death-related news in Hajjah, various different personal disputes led to the deaths of five people [Masdar Online].

Government to Investigate Death at Herak October Commemoration:

Aden al-Ghad reports that the Yemeni government will investigate the death of a man that occurred after clashes at the Herak organised commemoration of the 14th October Revolution. The newspaper reports that it is ‘strange’ that this is being investigated when numerous other cases of southerners being killed by the security forces are ignored.


EU worried about security situation in Yemen and terrorist attacks [Masdar Online]  … 70 year deadly tribal dispute ends between tribes in Marib and al-Mahra [Mareb Press]  … Employees at the Presidential Palace in Mukalla protest for various issues [Aden al-Ghad]  … Iranian weapons ship case decision adjourned to 29th October [Aden al-Ghad]




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