Armies of Liberation

Jane Novak's blog about Yemen

New US backed Yemen Unity government hopes to negotiate with AQAP

Filed under: Al-Qaeda, Counter-terror, USA, Yemen, state jihaddists — by Jane Novak at 6:01 pm on Sunday, February 5, 2012

Update: Just to be clear, Saleh et al overtly and covertly negotiated with al Qaeda for years. Officials often defended the policy as rehabilitation and CT policy. Following the 2006 escape of 23 AQ operatives, Saleh said he was in touch with them all by phone, including presumably Wahishi, current AQAP leader. After releasing Jamal al Badawi in 2007, Saleh said he was going to use him as an informant. The earlier negotiation between Saleh and Abu al Fida on behalf of the jihaddis who were supposedly under security supervision resulted in looser requirements and an AQ promise to not attack within Yemen which held for about two years until the attack on the US embassy. And then there was that meeting in 09 between Saleh and the southern contingent of jihaddists that included a transfer of cash, we see where that got us.

Original: Spectacular. I was concerned that negotiations with the Taliban would be followed by negotiations with AQAP but it seemed too extreme to be possible, even for Obama. First the GCC deal freezes out (in bulk) all the philosophical forces opposed to the narrow, violent, supremacist al Qaeda worldview (including the protesters, women, southerners, Houthis, civil government advocates and everyone who defected from the GPC on principle) and then the (US endorsed) GCC deal re-empowers the calcified and dysfunctional ruling structure, paving the way for al Qaeda to impose its rigid political agenda on the rest of the nation through legitimate political avenues. While it is possible for hardened jihaddists to mature, the group has to change before they can come engage in the political process including renouncing violence and taqfirism, and endorsing equal rights and protections for all denominations and all Yemeni citizens. They are not there yet.

CNN via Yemen Online: 5/2/2012, Yemen’s highest military authority Sunday announced its willingness to open channels of dialogue with al Qaeda in hopes of reaching a long-term cease-fire agreement.

The military committee was formed as part of the power transfer deal in November. Spokesman Ali Saeed Obaid told CNN that the new Yemeni military leadership is opening its hands and will seek new solutions with al Qaeda fighters.

Al Qaeda currently controls large areas in the southern Abyan and Shabwa provinces of Yemen.

“We are offering al Qaeda a chance to be involved in the political decisions in the country through politics, rather than forcing their views with the use of arms,” Obaid said.

Vice President Abdurabu Hadi is chairman of the committee, which is responsible for rebuilding the Yemeni military.

“The committee is hoping that al Qaeda lays down its arms and participates in seeking change democratically, like the millions in Yemen,” Obaid said, adding that al Qaeda would in return handover all territories under its control to the military and evacuate government posts.

Al Qaeda has not yet responded to the offer, the committee said.

Yemen’s government is in the midst of a transfer of power in which President Ali Abdullah Saleh, a longtime United States ally in the war on terrorism, has agreed to step down after more than 33 years of rule.

Islamist militants seized control of Abyan last May after government positions were suddenly emptied. The province was announced an Islamic emirate a week later, resulting in hundreds of fighters joining their lines.

Hundreds of troops and fighters have been killed daily as part of their efforts to rid the province of the fighters.

More than 100,000 residents of Abyan evacuated the province when clashes intensified last July. They are currently living in shelters in the neighboring provinces of Aden and Lahj.

Last month, a committee formed by Hadi persuaded al Qaeda fighters in Radda, in the nearby province of al-Baitha, to evacuate the area two weeks after they took it over.

Suspected al Qaeda fighters left the town after five days of tense negotiations in exchange for the release of three prisoners, Hadi’s office said at the time. CNN

Related, a Lebanese paper questions whether Tariq al Dhahab is an operative of AQAP or the National Security (but these are not mutually exclusive) and if the take over of Radda was another false flag maneuver. The Abbad report below has al Wahishi physically in Raada with al Dhahab, but Wahishi and the National Security have had easy, if not good, relations for a long time

Before leaving Yemen, Ali Abdullah Saleh had opened the game of al-Qaeda again. This time occurred from Radda Area where al-Qaeda does not exist. Despite the fact that there is convention that led fundamentalist group to leave the town after occupying it for 4 weeks and the authority undertook to implement some of the armed group’s demands, subsequent developments say that this scenario will be repeated in other parts of Yemen.

It seems that Ali Abdullah Saleh even two weeks before heading for U. S. for treatment had not got bored from using al-Qaeda card, however, he signed (GCC) Imitative which turned him an honorary president with no power. He is still insisting on lifting up the slogan of “Me or al-Qaeda”. He did it in Abyan Province, south Yemen, at the middle of May when he directed security troops to leave the gates of the town opened and showed no resistance in front of attack of hundreds of armed men. Later, the regime said they belong to al-Qaeda.

Now, he is implementing it again but in a way improperly directed. Tribal Sheik from Radda Town called Tariq al-Dhahab, has tribal broad influence and belongs to famous tribe distinguished by its strength and the wide-spread of weapon among its elements in al-Baidha Province south Yemen along with hundreds of armed men, entered the area and faced no resistance from Central Security or Republican Guards present in the area. Nothing stopped Dhahab and his men, they entered the town as if they were going on a picnic or fishing trip not to occupy an entire town, and later declared an Islamic emirate.

After entering, they headed for the main Ameriya Mosque in the town where they prayed Maghreb (Sunset Prayers) and Isha (Evening Paryers). Between the two prayers, Tariq al-Dhahab delivered preach in which he pledged of allegiance to the leader of al-Qaeda in Arab Peninsula Nasr al-Waheshi and to the leader of al-Qaeda in Afghanistan Ayman al-Zawahiri. He announced a set of procedures in the town including forcing owners of petrol station to sell fuel with former price before the outbreak of the Youth Revolution in Yemen.

It is a step through which he aimed at gaining people’s sympathy. After that, they headed for ancient Ameriya Castle overlooking the town. They did not stop but they kept on dominating the rest of the town within the next two days. They, moreover, went to the Central Prison and released all inmates. Deputy Minister of Information Ministry Abdu Janadi commented on this conduct and said they did so in order to increase their number and arm those who want to join them. This was denied by Tariq al-Dhahab as saying he only had released two inmates of his followers. Dhahab later announced through recorded video saying, “Islamic caliphate is coming even if we sacrifice our souls and skulls for that,” He, moreover, threatened to free the Arabian Peninsula after applying Islamic law in Yemen, meeting the need of people.

Simultaneously, the Military Committee, formed in order to demilitarize Yemeni cities in accordance with (GCC) plan, continued holding meetings in the capital Sana’a to search the last results of the removal of barricades and military vehicles from the streets of the cities of Sana’a and Taiz. It issued a statement in which it praised these operations without forgetting to say that it would form investigation committee regarding what happened in Radda Town. It appeared that the Committee was in a side and Radda sheiks of tribes in the other. The sheiks were trying to rectify the deteriorating situation under an overt absence of security showing no resistance towards Dhahab’s elements occupying the town.

Consequently, tribe sheiks announced to hold meeting to discuss the serious situation especially as people there resorted to use their guns and to stand in front of their shops and houses to protect them. More serious than that, the large number of those released prisoners who were detained against a backdrop of revenge issues and crimes such as rape, stealing and murder including approximately 165 prisoners had sentenced to death.

How did the large number of fighters enter the town and how did they pass through all military checkpoints located along the main highways connecting the governorates of Yemen. Local source, who preferred to be in the state of anonymity, said they did not enter the town as rumored but they were gathered from inside the town. He explained to “al-Akhbar” that a number of sheiks repeatedly appealed to the authority the growing presence of strange militants from the town, but their calls faced no response. The sheiks, furthermore, appealed to militants to leave the town, otherwise they would use force to take militants out of the town and they offered them 3 days before Tariq al-Dhahab demanded to extend the deadline in order to discuss with senior sheiks of the tribe to reach to a solution that satisfies everybody without resorting to the strength of weapon. At the end, this resulted to make militants leave the town after the authority accepted some demands of Dhahab to release his younger brother from Political Security’s prison in Sana’a.

Khalid al-Dhahab shocked everybody when he said in statement to the press that his brother Tariq fully coordinated with National Security and with the former Interior Minister, the matter which puts questions regarding the reality of Tariq al-Dhahab link to Qaeda or is he a part of a security apparatus implementing specific task?

“The town of Radda was far from any mentioning of the presence of al-Qaeda inside and it did not happen that its name was linked to al-Qaeda,” said Managing Editor of “Masdar” independent newspaper, Abdul-Hakeem Helal, pointing out that we could never ignore the real presence of al-Qaeda in Yemen unlike what the opposition says through repeatable deny and that al-Qaeda is only a card played by Saleh.

For his part, media source in General People’s Congress (GPC), who did not want to mention his name, said to “al-Akhbar” that these acts done by Ali Abdullah Saleh before leaving Yemen were in the context of his attempts to bring chaos in spite of adopting immunity law which granted Saleh immunity from prosecution for his 33 year reign.

Simultaneously, elements belong to (GPC), headed by Saleh, notably were armed especially in Taiz and Dhale’ south Yemen. Informed sources said that their main goal in the next phase is to hinder early presidential election scheduled on February 21st, so Yemen would return to square number one.

Source: Lebanese al-Akhbar Newspaper

Abaad Centre for Studies and Research report on Al Qaeda in Yemen

Filed under: Al-Qaeda, reports — by Jane Novak at 12:53 pm on Saturday, February 4, 2012

Yay, an English version, pretty much what I thought it said but less headache inducing:

Yemen Post The Yemen-based Abaad Centre for Studies and Researches has cautioned that some factions seek to collapse Yemeni cities militarily under the pretext of Al-Qaeda as happened in Radda and Abyan provinces scenarios.
“This scenario may be carried out in Ibb, Dhala’a, Lahj, and, Hadhramout and other cities would be controlled under the pretext of fighting Al-Qaeda as it is expected to happen in Dhamar, Taiz, and Hodeidah.
In a periodic report, Abaad pointed out that Al-Qaeda has no systematic structure and its goals are foggy, affirming that it lacks strategic visions.
“Therefore, Al-Qaeda was penetrated by local and international bodies, and only those bodies take advantages of Al-Qaeda,” added the centre. “Even some figures benefited from Al-Qaeda as that clearly appeared during its control and withdrawal of Al-Amria in Rada when Tariq Al-Dhahab could get his brother out of the custody.”
“There are figures affiliated to Al-Qaeda, some were in Abyan and others who escaped jails, are currently existed in Sana’a, and some Al-Qaeda fugitives live with the displaced people inside schools in Aden.”
The report ruled out that Al-Qaeda has the ability to take over any town, if it does not receive direct and indirect logistic support by some sides that are in connection to the power transfer process.
“Al-Dhahab withdrew from Radda after he failed to recruit enough numbers to completely control the city as well as he got his main demand, release of his bother” the report added.
The periodic report revealed that Al-Dhahab was not the real leader of Al-Qaeda in Radda.
It further cited that Al-Qaeda senior leaders, Nasser Al-Wohaish, the leader of Al-Qaeda, and Ebrahim Darwish, another Al-Qaeda leader were at Alzahir district of Baidha governorate when Radda was taken over.
“Decisions were taken by Al-Qaeda Shura council consisted of 20 persons who are selected of 60 persons, the real division of Al-Qaeda which is called ” Almuhajreen” which includes a Saudi and Pakistani nationals. Their duties were not external protection. Some Bedouins, tribesmen and other escapees joined Al-Qaeda in its fighting with the aim of getting money and others were contained as a result of Al-Dhahab’s charisma in the area. (Read on …)

Civil society activists condemn Yemeni scholars’ fatwa on writer as politically motivated exploitation of religion

Filed under: Civil Rights, Civil Society, Media, Religious, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 12:36 pm on Saturday, February 4, 2012

Rejecting Taqfirism flat out. And they are correct that a civil state does not reject religion but protects the rights of all religious persuasions equally.

RSF condemns the Takfeer campaign against Yemeni writers

A statement released by Revolution Salvation Front (RSF) on the apostasy campaign against the Yemeni writer, Bushra al-Maqtari

Condemnation Statement

O’ great people..O’ revolutionaries and freedom seekers in all squares of freedom and change
In deliberate abuse to the freedom of belief and approaching elimination and dominance of religion employing, the Yemeni writer Mrs. Bushra al-Maqtari, subjected to Takfeer (apostasy) campaign by known extremist groups.

Recently, these groups issued Fatwa, an Islamic edict by clerics, named as “The Olama’s Fatwa on abuse the Islam and Allah”, in which they named four writers: Bushra al-Maqtari, Fikry Kasim, Muhsin A’aid and Sami Shamsan of being “abused Islam” and described with “apostasy” and “Kufrism”.

The Fatwa elaborated by talking about an article of writer Bushra Maqtari, reported some of severed phrases from the article and interpreted it according their special orientation and political purpose for abuse and incitement to murder against the writer.

The RSF deplores and condemns this unjust Fatwa and that was not in fact Fatwa as it is just exploitation of religion for the liquidation of opponents to insert illegal ambitions, seeking to provoke sedition in society and exclusion of political opponent bigotry and bad interpretation of words away from its meanings.

It rejects the Takfeer at all. The so-called “Olama’s Fatwa on abuse the Islam and Allah” only regarded as a matter of political exploitation of religion to rein the other opinion and intellectually terrify. Such method already used by the same extremist groups against others and authorized the killing of children and women during previous political conflicts especially those infamous fatwa issued against the Yemen southerners during the civil war in 1994, misbelieved as “the war of apostasy and separation”. As well, many writers subjected to such Fatwas, as Dr. Abdul Aziz al-Maqalih and Dr. Hamood al-Awdi.

The RSF warns against going too far in using and monopoly religious and national eligibility by a group extremists and radicalists as Saleh’s regime did to weaken and exclude opposition opponents. Such behavior regarded as a crime must not be silent by the community.

It considered use of the mosques and public spaces to incite against other faiths, beliefs and ideologies as a blatant open call for incitement to murder and crime must be punished.

In this regard, the RSF calls upon the Ministry of Endowment to prevent the use of mosques to religious Takfeer, sedition and hatred in the community.

RSF also calls on political parties, human rights and civil society organizations, social and revolutionary representations, thinkers, writers and all the people to respond to such serious actions that threaten the security, stability and safety of the community.

RSF condemns the sites that published writings of abusive terms such as NabaNews and YemenPress, demanding to be prosecuted in accordance with the law.

Issued by The Peaceful Revolution Salvation Front
Date 03/02/2012

Fatwa is here and Gt’d here in article entitled: “The text of the fatwa, and the image” .. scientists Yemen opinion about insulting the divine: the article described Bushra Maqtari, and demanding closure of sites that published her article, and called for abusers to declare repentance”

Interesting to note that AQAP in Jaar banned some of the same newspapers that the scholars are also railing against.

Southerners urged to join National Reconciliation Conference

Filed under: South Yemen — by Jane Novak at 12:17 pm on Saturday, February 4, 2012

The US Ambassador met with southern leaders (Southern Forum) and urged a common vision, realistic and achievable goals, participation in the election and the coming National Reconciliation Conference. (I think anyway, I’m reading google translate of this article.) He also seems to indicate that full independence is opposed regionally and internationally. But of course these are not the local separatist leaders in the south.

There is a fracture between those who support federalism and those who remain committed to an independent state. In this case, I agree with Feierstein that, in order to be effective, they do need a common vision and realistic goals and that participation in the National Reconciliation Conference is an important step in achieving justice and full citizenship rights (one way or anther) for Southern Yemenis. However the international community by acknowledging the prior atrocities (now that Saleh et al have immunity) might take a step toward confidence building. These are not a bunch of disgruntled dead-enders; its most of the region. They do have a common vision (of systematic institutionalized oppression) but not a common solution if you factor in al Attas and the Cairo conference. Also there is no agreed upon leadership structure or formal mechanism of representation that was ever developed.

The southerners had placed a lot of hope in gaining international and UN support based on Saleh’s violation of UN SC res 928 and 931 in 1994, which in their view supports the contention that the south was illegally occupied or reunited by force following Saleh’s victory in the civil war. Considering Saleh immediately violated res 2014 in 2011 without international consequences or reprimand, it now seems highly unlikely that the UN SC will ever produce a result that is not firstly designed toward the best interest of the permanent members.

The system, norms and authority of international law were undermined by the UN mediated and SC endorsed GCC plan, which undermines not only principles of justice but the right of self-determination. So as I’ve said several times before, including early last year before the GCC debacle, and even had translated into Arabic to be clear, I think participating in a self-governed federalist system with the internationally guarantee of a later southern referendum on unity is the way to go.

There are many more things that can be done to diffuse tensions. enough to participate in a conversation at least. For example, this is one spot-on reader comment, “Why should Mahdi Makwalah, one of Saleh’s country-men remain as the supreme military commandant of the Southern governorates including: Aden, Abyan and Lahj? That is another provocation for Southerners.”

A seemingly related reader comment: Wondering why the Ansar AlShariah (or AlQaeada) have managed – easily – to control provinces and cities in the South where the Southern Peaceful Movement (SPM) has a strong sentiment; areas like Azan (Shabwa), Zinjibar & Jaar (Abyan), and AlHota (Lahj). The Ansar AlShariah took partial or full control of such areas after Central Forces and Presidential Guards handed it over to them, or did nothing material to stop them, and that the Air force made random bombardments on these areas which inflected fear and caused damage to residents and their properties?.

Meanwhile (from the same website) “the Supreme National Council for the Liberation and the restoration of the State of the South” (TSNCLRRSS) said in a letter: “The presidential elections scheduled for February 21, 2012 under the initiative of the Gulf, is one of aspects of prosthetic solutions to resolve the crisis of power and the popular uprising in Yemen, and is not looking at the core of the crisis of authority, devastated by the crisis, the failure of the unity, which was one causes emptying of power to face the struggle of the people of the south and is unable to meet the requirements of its people in the north, raising the people against it.” And that’s a good point. The TSNCLRRSS is calling for a boycott of the election.

Another viewpoint:

Just as the Southern were having a “breath of relief” when Mr. Saleh fell, came up Islah Party trying to impose their Islamic vision on the Southernerns yet by force, as much as, if not firecer than, their predecessor. Yesterday they transported their members from Ta’az joining their countrymen who are residents of Aden City. Their announce purpose is to celebrate the 1st anniversary of the (Failed) revolution, but instead they went to AlMualla district of Aden, the heart of the Southern Peaceful Movement strong hold area.

Wondering why they didn’t make their celebration in Saada instead of AlMualla?
Saana gangs have extrem uncompromising disagreemets among themselves, but, ironically, at the same time, are having a full mutal strategy on the South. Whatever they do, they make sure it doesn’t effect their iron grip fist on the South.

Public water not available in Taiz for two months

Filed under: Taiz, Water, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 8:31 am on Friday, February 3, 2012

I was shocked to learn many years ago that Taiz routinely only got public water every 45 days. In 2007, a Japanese concern came up with a comprehensive water strategy for Yemen, after a two year study, that included some very basic and logical recommendations. However institutional dis-coordination and competing interests, including those of qat barons and water merchants within the government, prevented its implementation. Over the years, the water issue evoked protests in Taiz, including one where people held up bread and empty water jugs to demand basic services including water. Clearly one of the issues going forward on all levels will be dislodging those with vested financial interests in corruption and dysfunction that inhibit reform. The medical sector is another example with similarly dire consequences. The following YT article is a broad overview of “Concerns over armed presence in Taiz,” and tensions regarding water are just one triggering factor.

Yemen Times, Taiz: “We ask the security committee to deal with these problems promptly. They keep giving the armed men 48 hours to put down their guns…but after these periods, nothing changes.”

Hawdh Al-Ashraf’s main road was closed when local residents protested after not receiving water from the government for more than two months.

“We are a big family and we cannot afford to pay YR 12,000 monthly for water tanks. We will keep the road closed until the state fulfills its promise to provide us with water,” said Nabeel Ahmad of Hawdh Al-Ashraf.

Fekra Mahmoud, a writer from Taiz, said that life in Taiz has been worrying as some young people “are immature and might be pushed by the regime or revolution supporters to do things such as fire gunshots in the air and close roads. We should all work to return life to normalcy in Taiz.”

According to a source that asked not to be named, there are people who want rampant insecurity in the city and who pretend that water and electricity problems are the motives behind closing roads. According to well-informed sources from the Republican Guards, representatives of the military committee withdrew from Taiz as they were called on by higher-ups in Sana’a.

This occurred simultaneously with the arrival of the military commission headed by Major General Nasser Al-Tahiri in Taiz. The major came to solve issues regarding checkpoints, the removal of armed figures and the release of prisoners.

An official source from the military commission denied that the withdrawal of Republican Guard from Taiz took place. He said that all the Republican Guard units in Taiz are committed, are under the guidance of the military committee and that they returned to their camps. He added that the commission is living up to its responsibility to restore security and stability to Taiz.

HR Min Mansour to form independent commission to investigate HR crimes in Yemen

Filed under: Civil Rights, Judicial, Ministries, Tribes, Yemen, hostages, prisons — by Jane Novak at 7:43 pm on Thursday, February 2, 2012

She’s doing well and going in the right directions (for example closing private prisons) but the question is whether she will be allowed to cross the red lines or thwarted by ye ol powerful and guilty persons even though they have immunity. On a related note, on e report holds that Gen Kiran got a false passport and is planning to escape Yemen. Beyond his recent crimes against protesters in Aden and Taiz, Kiran also has a court case pending for the death by torture of Ahmed Darwish in an Aden prison cell.

Yemen Post: Yemen Human Rights Horia Mashhoor said on Wednesday that an independent commission will be formed with the aim of investigating violations committed against human rights since the outbreak of anti-regime protests in last February.

“Probes about killing of protesters in Sana’a , Taiz and Abyan lack transparency, and Yemen’s judiciary lack enough fairness,” she added.

In her meeting with Middle East and North Africa director of the U.S. National Endowment for Democracy(NED) Abdul Rahman Al-Jubouri, she made clear that Yemen needs special legalizations that cope with international laws.

Mashhoor revealed that the ministry seeks to hold a national dialogue conference to solve Yemen’s problems and come up with joint national views on human rights.

She revealed that Human Rights Ministry would be shifted to an independent supreme authority which enjoys impartiality.

For his part, Al-Jabouri stressed that NED seeks to help Yemen in the field of enacting legislations of the constitution and election laws, pointing out that NED would support and train the consultative body belonging to the Human Rights through Ministry.

In an interview with the state-run 26 September newspaper, Mashhoor made reference to the existence of a big gap between laws and their application on the ground.

Mashhoor has said she seeks to shut down private custodies (ed-private prisons) run by some officials and tribal leaders, stressing that the existence of such custodies contradicts Yemen laws and international conventions.
Mashhoor has vowed to release all political prisoners held in security forces.

Separately, Mashour stated that Yemen’s high-ranking officials take over 90 percent of allowances and benefits allocated to government ministries while low-ranking employees get nothing.

She affirmed that Yemen’s financial systems encourage corruption, demanding to carry out significant financial reforms.

US cannot increase drone use in Yemen without providing shelter for civilians

Filed under: Abyan, Aden, Air strike, Al-Qaeda, Counter-terror, Diplomacy, GCC, South Yemen, USA, Yemen, shabwa — by Jane Novak at 6:43 pm on Thursday, February 2, 2012

Yemenis are fleeing (not joining) al Qaeda where ever they appear. However the vast majority of civilians lack the funds to rent an apartment or to buy food once they leave their farms and possessions behind to be looted by AQAP. But if they stay, they are subject to both al Qaeda dictatorship and US drones. The US may label those who don’t flee as collateral damage or as providing material support (as the Bedouins were in the Dec 2009 US strike in Abyan that killed 43 women and children when General Patraeus implied they were acceptable deaths because they selling vegetable to AQAP, despite the fact the villagers had appealed twice to local authorities to expel the group.)

Certainly AQAP bears the responsibility for sheltering in populated areas in the first place but people in the al Qaeda occupied territories of Yemen want to know where the refugee camps are. Seriously, where are they supposed to go? And it is a US problem when an al Qaeda presence means the potential of US drone strikes. The 120,000 who fled Zinjibar last May are still in the schools of Aden. I know Yemenis’ rights are very low on Obama’s priority list, but there must be a part of the plan to increase US drone use that will deal with the public panic and mass displacement that will occur as US drones follow AQ from province to province threatening people’s lives and homes. Over 15,000 fled Raada within days of Tariq al Dhahab’s (and al Wahishi’s) appearance. They were escaping both the al Qaeda fanaticism and the threat of US drones.

While the Obama administration may try to maintain the myth in the US that they know exactly who they are hitting, and its always a precise targeting, the non-lethal impact on civilians must be considered as well. The US is playing right into al Qaedas hands with nearly every policy from the re-imposition of a dictatorship through the GCC deal to Saleh’s visit to increased drones. The US is focused on vulnerable land when it should be focused on vulnerable people.

Basically, the US is going to bomb Yemen in order to pull off an uncontested election that nobody wants (except the US, the GPC and Islah elites) in the interest of “stability.” If the expired parliament gave Saleh immunity, it can appoint Hadi. The bogus show election isn’t worth more Yemeni lives or the displacement of tens of thousands, and it certainly wont confer legitimacy when there’s only one candidate that was selected by the US. The most politically disenfranchised are going to boycott anyway: civil minded protesters, southerners and Houthis.

The National: Yemen will increasingly rely on US drone strikes to target Islamist militants threatening to disrupt a transfer of power this month, Yemeni government officials said.

The president, Ali Abdullah Saleh, is meant to hand over power to his vice president, Abdurabu Mansur Hadi, on February 22.

The run up to the transfer is being overshadowed by growing protests, including within the military, which have grounded Yemen’s air force across much of the country.

Two aides in Mr Hadi’s office said they expected a rise in drone attacks against Al Qaeda militants.

The strikes will be intensified only if necessary, to ensure that militant groups do not expand in vulnerable areas, said one of the aides. Both asked to remain anonymous. (Read on …)

Yemen Embassy publishes photo of Yemeni American citizens at anti-regime press conference in New York

Filed under: Yemen — by Jane Novak at 4:47 pm on Thursday, February 2, 2012

(Updated) The Yemeni embassy had the audacity to take and publish a photo of the anti-Saleh press conference in New York. The Yemeni embassy is infringing on the rights of US citizens to free speech through published attempts at intimidation. Saleh, currently at the Ritz Carlton, killed hundreds of protesters and wounded over 20,000 in 2011 alone. He’s a very dangerous guy. This is a regime that tortures people for sport. The diplomatic immunity the US granted to Saleh to come to the US for “medical treatment” can not include veiled threats to US anti-regime activists in New York City and the thug tactics used in Yemen.

Usually Yemeni government operatives are more discrete when spying on US citizens, not publishing photos of it. I know and don’t want to hear that its “just Basha.” Tell it to Fox New’s Katherine Harrage, she’ll buy it in a minute. This is entirely unacceptable behavior.

Also in his tweets Mohammed al Basha, Yemen embassy “media spokesman,” said he was in the lobby of the Ritz and invited some of the civil rights activists for a coffee. When is a coffee not a coffee? When a Saleh operative invites you.

Basha published the photo on twitter here (click here) with the caption, Picture of the anti #Yemen President #Saleh “event” in New York (No Comments)


Maybe if it was Mubarak or Qaddafi or Assad with immunity in the Ritz photographing the anti-regime activists, it might be clearer, but most Americans have no awareness that Saleh is technically a war criminal and mass murderer as well as a huge thief and a compulsive liar.

Update: While Basha has accused me of launching a personal attack on him, I beg to differ. I am criticizing his professional actions in his capacity as the Butcher Saleh’s spokesman here in the US, and likely he was with Saleh when he tweeted the picture of the (Yemeni-American) US citizens at the anti-Saleh press conference, considering he was later in the lobby.

Its really quite ungracious of the Yemeni mass murderer to start issuing implied threats via the Yemeni embassy personnel to US citizens immediately upon his arrival in the US. Lets recall what our current guest, Ali Abdullah Saleh and his cronies did on March 18, 2011: well trained Yemeni roof top snipers killed 54 unarmed protesters, largely with head shots:

Here a man calls his mother to inform her that his brother, her son is dead and the only words I understand are Ali Abdullah Saleh:

May 29, 2011 they burnt down a protests’ camp in Taiz at 2 am without warning and shot the fleeing people that weren’t burnt to death. Over 100 were killed (don’t watch this one, its gruesome but that’s Saleh.)

Then there’s the thousands of Yemeni citizens that Saleh, Basha’s boss, killed in his capacity as president prior to the outbreak of protests. There’s also an extensive history of the mass arrests, systemic torture, collective punishment (denial of food and medicine to entire provinces) and mass corruption and grand larceny. Saleh’s a multimillionaire and funds attacks in Yemen with money looted from the Yemeni treasury.

Yemenis protest Saleh presence in US, (AFP)

NEW YORK — Activists protested Thursday outside the luxury New York hotel where they believe Yemen’s embattled President Ali Abdullah Saleh is staying while seeking medical treatment.

The Yemeni leader’s whereabouts have not been confirmed since he arrived in the United States Saturday on a chartered flight. US authorities let him in to receive treatment for wounds suffered in an assassination attempt.

Protesters and Yemeni opposition supporters say they have firm information that Saleh is staying at the Ritz-Carlton, a grand hotel overlooking Central Park in Manhattan.

Standing on the sidewalk opposite the hotel, about a dozen activists waved placards with slogans like “democracies should not host dictators,” as well as gory photographs of people apparently killed in Yemen’s year-long pro-democracy protests.

Yemen’s Nobel Peace Prize winner, Tawakkol Karman, spoke to the protest via cellphone from Sanaa and denounced US President Barack Obama’s government for welcoming Saleh.

“We are so disappointed that Saleh is staying in one of New York city’s hotels,” Karman said in comments relayed to the gathering by New York-based Yemeni activist Ibraham Qatabi. “Saleh should be held accountable and referred to the International Criminal Court.” (Read on …)

SOHR report Dec 2011: human rights violations in southern Yemen

Filed under: Islamic Imirate, South Yemen, War Crimes, Yemen, state jihaddists — by Jane Novak at 9:04 am on Thursday, February 2, 2012

Its a monthly report on state violence and other HR violations including by AQAP that is always precise in terms of names, dates, photos and locations, and it usually is issued within a month or two of the end date, except for those months with large massacres. The recently issued report for December 2011 lists three dead, as opposed to earlier months and years when many dozens were killed and hundreds were wounded in state violence against southern protesters and activists. The fatality totals in the southern protests (2007-2011) far exceeds the number killed by the state since the broader rev began in 2011, a distasteful metric of murder. (The UN SC forgave 33 years of atrocities in Yemen in the interests of “stability,” providing little incentive for Assad to stop his butchery.) In the following, I pulled out some AQAP violations of human rights for a future project but the entire report is available here at

SOHR report Dec 2011

On Monday, December ,5 Sheikh Tawfiq Ali Mansour Juneidi ,nicknamed
“Hawas “the leader of the People’s Committees in the town of Lauder of
Abyan province ,died as a result of wounds sustained by a blast of an
explosive package targeted him on Friday, December ,2 and which also
caused the death of his colleague ,Ali Nasser Houshan .The Web site” ,Taj
South Arabia “reported that the People’s Committees protect the district
from the al-Qaeda operatives ,since it is believe that the al-Qaeda is behind
this assassination….

“Al Qaeda “operatives on the evening of Monday, December , ambushed
two vehicles to target a number of people from Almayaser Tribe from the
Farajs when they were passing in” Ekd “area between the districts of Lauder
and Wadiea .Aden News Agency said that the ambush caused injuries
among three people ,they are :Ahmed Hussein Ashal ,Hussein Ali Ashal and
Ahmed Mohammed al-Ghairi. (Read on …)

Wahishi was in Raada, Center

Filed under: Islamic Imirate, Yemen, al-Bayda, personalities — by Jane Novak at 10:56 am on Wednesday, February 1, 2012

New Yemen reprints report from Abaad:
(Read on …)

Yemen strike and Obama on drones

Filed under: Air strike, Al-Qaeda, Counter-terror, USA, Yemen, obits — by Jane Novak at 7:43 am on Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Is Abdul Munim al Fathani, a relative of Saad al Fathani, killed in a Christmas eve drone strike in 2009?

Its absurd that US officials are using al Fathani’s connection to the USS Cole bombing as justification for the drone attack when Fahd al Quso and Jamal al Badawi walked out of Yemeni prison in 2007, pardoned by Saleh after less than three years in jail, and the US knew where they were- at home. In 2009, Al Quso was put on the Most Wanted Terrorist list.

BBC: However, tribal leaders told the AFP news agency that a control post and a school hosting a midnight meeting of local al-Qaeda chiefs and fighters were targeted in four overnight raids.

Abdul Munim al-Fathani, who was reportedly wanted by the US for alleged links to the attacks on the USS Cole in 2000 and a French oil tanker in 2002, was among the dead, they said.

“We think they were carried out by American planes,” one tribal source told AFP, on condition of anonymity and without elaborating.

al Shawa: US drones killed on Monday night nine Al-Qaeda suspects in the southern city of Abyan.

The sources said that two drones shelled several positions in Loder and Al-Wodaia districts of Abyan.

Three of the raids targeted a school in which Al Qaeda fighters and chiefs of a local militant network were meeting around midnight.

Among the people killed was regional Al Qaeda leader Abdul Monem al Fahtani, who has long been sought by the Yemeni authorities, and other local chiefs.

Obama tries to pretend they know who they are targeting. How careful can you be when you rely on the thoroughly compromised Yemeni CT intel? Have the strikes really killed more terrorists than civilians in Yemen? We’d have to start with the 43 civilians killed in Abyan 2009 and count from there, but the US doesn’t know exactly who they are targeting and killing, for example Sheikh Shabwani in May.

USA Today: President Obama is defending his use of unmanned drone attacks in Pakistan and elsewhere, saying they have been used to kill more terrorists than civilians.

“I want to make sure that people understand actually drones have not caused a huge number of civilian casualties,” Obama said during a forum with YouTube and Google-plus. “For the most part, they have been very precise, precision strikes against al- Qaeda and their affiliates. And we are very careful in terms of how it’s been applied.” (Read on …)

The South and the Northern Government: A Persistently Troubled Dialogue By Nedhal Moqbel

Filed under: South Yemen, War Crimes, guest posts — by Jane Novak at 9:00 am on Monday, January 30, 2012

As the title indicates, this is a guest post by Nedhal Moqbel

The South and the Northern Government: A Persistently Troubled Dialogue
By Nedhal Moqbel

A recent episode of “Agenda Maftouha” (Open Agenda) program, broadcast by BBC Arabic TV, discussed Yemen’s security situation. Among the program’s guests were the Southern activist Saleh Al-Jabwani and Colonel Abdullah Al-Hadri who represented President Ali Abdullah Saleh’s opposition. Mr. Al-Hadri dilated on Saleh’s crimes against protesters in Sanaa and Taiz squares and the destruction he left behind. However, Mr. Al-Hadri obviously got nervous and impatient when the issue of Southern secession was raised. As he responded to Mr. Al-Jabwani’s comments, Colonel Al-Hadri used an emotional speech and a sharp tone, contending that the current situation is the cause of the entire “Yemeni nation.”

“Our cause is one . . . why do you want to divide us amidst this continuous uprising?” added Mr. Al-Hadri. Wait a minute! Wasn’t it a “one Yemeni nation” when Southerners began their own uprising after 1994, demanding their right to a merely dignified life? Wasn’t it a “one Yemeni nation” when you and your boss (Saleh) brutally persecuted them? Weren’t those protesters your fellow citizens and, therefore, part of this “Yemeni nation”? Moreover, Mr. Al-Hadri stated that General Ali Mohsen Al-Ahmar was an honest military man who refused to stand by a dictator, and so did Colonel Al-Hadri and many others in the military. He said, “Yes, we used to be Saleh’s partners before. But when he stained his hands with blood and began to distort the country and foster Al-Qaeda, we decided to stay away and choose the homeland and the nation.” How devious! How provocative!

In a sympathetic tone, Mr. Al-Hadri spoke of Saleh’s crimes during the recent protests in North Yemen, stressing that this bloodshed was the reason he (Al-Hadri) and others like General Al-Ahmar seceded from Saleh. As if Saleh’s hands were clean until before these protests! What about the blood he has shed in the South since 1994? What about the thousands of Southerners whom he and his allies killed and wounded in that short-term civil war with military tanks and rockets? What about many extra thousands of Southerners whom they have killed, detained, tortured, and wounded since the outset of the Southern Peaceful Hirak? Why did Mr. Al-Hadri and his fellow military men not distance themselves from Saleh while he was shedding those bloods in the South? Why did they continue to support him, to represent his iron fist over the South? Why did they turn against Saleh only when his victims were Northern citizens?

Of course, my intention is not to attack anyone. I simply reject the twisted language Mr. Al-Hadri used to obscure the Southern cause. He went on, using the same emotional appeal: “It’s shameful to talk about South and North now . . . our cause now is that of a homeland and a nation.” Well! What is really shameful is that Colonel Al-Hadri does not consider the Southern issue itself a cause of an entire homeland whose lands and natural resources and jobs have been robbed, an entire people that used to exist independently but now is under a real occupation. What is really shameful is that Mr. Al-Hadri’s words echoed Saleh’s attitudes toward the South even though the former was presented in the program as an anti-Saleh figure. The same old regime being reproduced! No wonder that most of the oppositional figures affiliated with the “new” government participated in various ways in the 1994 war against the South. No wonder that they still unjustly and irrationally compare the Southern cause (a cause of a homeland) with the Huthi issue (a cause of a sectarian group).

Northern military figures like Colonel Al-Hadri know well the many injustices from which Southerners have suffered too long. Therefore, it is unacceptable that he accuse them of having “ruptured the country.” The country has been torn apart since the 1994 civil war. I wonder if Mr. Al-Hadri still remembers when his citizens in the North celebrated their “victory’ over the South on 7/7/1994; the Sanaa official TV then displayed Northern women uttering trilling cries of joy and Northern men chanting on streets, “Allah Akbar! Long live our leader Ali Abdullah Saleh!” On the other side of the country, Southerners were collecting the dead bodies of their loved ones in order to bury them. This black day, with all the sad memories it carries to Southerners, was made an official holiday and a national day to celebrate annually. Technically, unification ended in 1994 and was replaced by an occupation of the South and a robbery of its natural resource revenues, history, culture, and dignity. Who, then, tore up the previously unified Yemen?

The General People’s Congress and the Joint Meeting Parties are two faces of the same coin. The talk about having given Saleh immunity from prosecution is only half the truth. This “new” government has, in fact, given immunity to itself, too, since the majority of its officials were yesterday’s strong allies of Saleh’s. What we see now in the Sanaa government is the same old regime, and what we hear is the same old language, especially when it comes to the Southern problem. This government’s officials may undergo internal conflicts, but the Southern issue is always the thing that eventually brings them together due to their shared fear of losing the South with all its many treasures. Until Southerners achieve their goal of liberation, we will continue to hear the same rhetoric from Northern officials (and from Northern ordinary citizens) who often argue fearfully and impatiently, “there’s only one Yemen . . . unity is a red line . . . we’re ready to die for it . . . we’ll protect it with our own blood . . . unity or death.”

Comment by Jane: It is true that the atrocities toward the southern protesters (2007-2010) provoked little if any outrage in other parts of Yemen. During the Saada War, civil groups aligned themselves with the concept of civilian immunity without taking a stand on either side of conflict itself. Conversely during the southern protests, the arrests, torture and cold blooded killings elicited little sympathy. Beyond the absence of media attention, some in Sanaa expressed the opinion that southern protesters deserved it. In 2007/8, Southerners were really expecting that their counterparts in the north would join their uprising against the regime.

The lack of domestic solidarity against the state’s systematic attacks on unarmed southern protesters that in part caused the shift in demands from equal civil rights to independence. Remarkably, some of the current revolutionaries (who are seeking to overthrow the regime) deny that southerners have the right to seek independence although both movements deny the legitimacy of the state. From the outset of the current revolution, few efforts were made to reach out to the southern secessionists. And many southerners viewed the year long protests in Sanaa and other parts of the country in a disconnected way, not wholly unsympathetic, but as if the bloody events were occurring in another county. As I’ve said before, many view the unity government as an re-branding of northern power. some also view all northerners as privileged and part of the oppressive structure, when in fact disenfranchised northerners are very poverty stricken and thoroughly without basic services.

In terms of raw numbers, Saleh’s trail of blood, more southern protesters were killed than “northern” protester fatalities over the last year of the rev, and it occurred week after week in an atmosphere of domestic and international silence.

كما كتبت في العام الماضي ، أنا أتفق مع مفهوم الفيدرالية المؤقتة مع استفتاء مضمون في المحافظات الجنوبية على الوحدة في غضون سنوات قليلة ، وإن كان فقط للسماح لإفساح المجال للأطفال لاستعادة صحتهم مجدداً. لكن المشكلة هي أزمة مصداقية.

Filed under: South Yemen, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 6:42 pm on Sunday, January 29, 2012

As I wrote last year, I agree with the concept of a temporary federalism with a guaranteed referendum in the southern provinces on unity in a few years, if just to allow some breathing space for the children to get healthy again. However the problem is a crisis of credibility.
كما كتبت في العام الماضي ، أنا أتفق مع مفهوم الفيدرالية المؤقتة مع استفتاء مضمون في المحافظات الجنوبية على الوحدة في غضون سنوات قليلة ، وإن كان فقط للسماح لإفساح المجال للأطفال لاستعادة صحتهم مجدداً. لكن المشكلة هي أزمة مصداقية.
(Read on …)

Statement from Dammaj, Yemen

Filed under: Dammaj, Education, Sa'ada, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 6:39 am on Friday, January 27, 2012

English, or Googlish rather, below:

al Tagheer:التغيير – صنعاء – صالح الصريمي:

كشف المتحدث باسم أهالي دماج بمحافظة صعدة، محمد الغرباني، عن مقتل 32 أجنبي وجرح أكثر من 40 آخرين في الأحداث الأخيرة التي شهدتها منطقة دماج المحاصرة من قبل جماعة عبدالملك الحوثي منذ قرابة شهرين.

وقال خلال مؤتمر صحفي عقده اليوم بصنعاء بمركز الإعلام الحقوقي بالتعاون مع مكتب التنسيق الإعلامي لمنطقة دماج :”أن سفارات الضحايا الأجانب في صنعاء لم تتفاعل على الإطلاق مع ما حدث لرعاياها في دماج صعدة بالشكل المطلوب”.

وأشار الغرباني إلى أن ما اسماه بالتجاهل غير المبرر لهذه القضية من قبل السفارات الأجنبية يدعوا للاستغراب، ويضع أكثر من علامة استفهام خصوصاً وأن القتلى والجرحى الأجانب – حد قوله- كانوا يحملون أكثر من 13 جنسية عربية وأجنبية، بينهم أمريكان وفرنسيين وألمان وبريطانيين.

وفي رده على المزاعم الحوثية التي تقول بأن الضحايا الأجانب كانوا يحملون سلاح نفى المتحدث باسم دماج صحة تلك المزاعم مؤكداً بأن جميع القتلى والجرحى الأجانب هم طلاب علم شرعي في دار الحديث بمنطقة دماج وليس لهم أي علاقة بأي خلافات أو مشاكل.

وأضاف:”لقد عرف مركز الحديث منذ تأسيسه بالنهج السلمي ولم تحدث أي مشاكل إلا عندما أراد الحوثيون خلال الآونة الأخيرة استكمال سيطرتهم على محافظة صعدة وحجة والجوف”.

من جهته أوضح الإعلامي حسن الحاشدي، مسؤول الأنشطة والبرامج في اللجنة الشعبية لفك حصار دماج، أن قضية دماج هي قضية حقوقية مطلبية بامتياز وليس لها أي صبغة مذهبية .

وقال الحاشدي :”إن دار الحديث بمنطقة دماج ظل لأكثر من ثلاثون عاماً في تسامح مذهبي مع من حوله من أعلام الزيدية وما يثار اليوم هو عبارة عن فكر دخيل على المجتمع اليمني لا علاقة له بالزيدية ولا بالشافعية “.

جرائم وانتهاكات في دماج

وتحدث صالح الصريمي، رئيس مركز الإعلام الحقوقي، عن الجانب الإنساني والحقوقي في قضية دماج مؤكداً بأن إحكام الحوثي على محافظة صعدة بقوة السلاح دفع المنظمات الإغاثية والحقوقية إلى مغادرة المنطقة باستثناء الصليب الأحمر الدولي الذي قال بأن وجودها هي الأخرى أصبح رمزي إذ لا تقدر على التحرك دون توجيهات الحوثي والقبول بشروطه المجحفة – حسب قوله.

وقال الصريمي :”إن الحوثيون لم يتوانوا في ارتكاب جرائم القتل ضد من يخالفهم الرأي والفكر والمنهج بدليل ما يحدث اليوم من حصار لمنطقة دماج وعدم السماح بدخول المواد الغذائية للمواطنين بالإضافة إلى إجبار سكان صعدة وبالذات النساء على صناعة الطعام لمن يطلق عليهم المجاهدين “.

كما تحدث الصريمي عن ما اسماها انتهاكات تمارس ضد الأطفال الذين تعرض عدد منهم للحبس بتهمة الفرار من معسكرات الحوثي التي تكتظ – حسب قوله- بصغار السن، متهماً في الوقت ذاته جماعة الحوثي بتعبئة الأطفال تعبئة خاطئة وتصوير كل من يخالفهم على أنهم عملاء لأمريكا وإسرائيل.

ووفقاً لرئيس مركز الإعلام الحقوقي فقد وصل الأمر بالحوثيين إلى القيام بتفجير منازل المواطنين المناوئين لهم وطردهم من مناطقهم بعد مصادرة كل أملاكهم منوهاً إلى أن عشرات الآلاف من السكان لا يزالون مشردين حتى اليوم ولا يستطيعون العودة إلى منازلهم.

وانتقد الصريمي دور المنظمات الحقوقية ووسائل الإعلام التي قال بأن عملها اقتصر فقط على المدن الرئيسية بعد تجاهلها لما يحدث في صعدة والجوف وحجة وأرحب، مؤكداً بأن ملف القتلى والجرحى في صعدة عموما ودماج خصوصا سيقدم للمحاكم المحلية والدولية وسيتم متابعة القضية حتى النهاية.

مصادرة قوافل الإغاثة

عبدالله الشيباني، مرافق لإحدى قوافل الإغاثة التي كانت متجهة إلى منطقة دماج ، أفاد هو الآخر بأن مجموعة مسلحة تابعة للحوثيين أعترضت طريقهم وقامت بمصادرة محتوى الشاحنة المحملة بالمواد الغذائية والدوائية التي كان برفقتها واختطافه هو وزملائه لمدة أسبوع.

وقال الشيباني:”لم يكتفي الحوثيون بحبسنا وإنما قاموا بسلب كل ما بحوزتنا من مصاريف وهواتف نقالة ومنعونا من التواصل مع أسرنا بل وحتى الطعام مما اضطرنا إلى الافتراق مع بقية المساجين في حدرة واحدة بما تبقى لدينا من فلوس لم تصل إليها ايدي الحوثيين”.

وتطرق الشيباني إلى حجم المعاناة التي لاقوها بعد خروجهم من الحبس سيما وقد جردهم الحوثيون من كل مصاريفهم وهواتفهم النقالة التي لم تعاد لهم – حد تعبيره – إلا أثناء العودة ، مؤكداً بأن المعونة الغذائية والدوائية تم مصادرتها كاملة إلى مخازن الحوثي ولم تصل إلى مستحقيها حتى اللحظة رغم مطالبة الناشطة الإعلامية رشيدة القيلي، المستمرة للحوثيين، بإرجاع القافلة أو تسليمها لمستحقيها.

وأختتم حديثه بالقول:” لقد التقينا بموطنين محتجزين في سجون الحوثي بتهم باطلة منها عدم دفع الزكاة للسيد عبد الملك الحوثي”.


Revealed a spokesman for the people of Incorporation in Saada province, Mohammed Agharbana, the foreign killing 32 and wounding over 40 others in the recent events in the zone of Incorporation besieged by a group Abdel Malik al-nearly two months.

He said during a press conference held today in Sana’a human rights information center in cooperation with the Office for the Coordination Media Incorporation: “The victims of foreign embassies in Sanaa did not interact at all with what happened to its citizens in Saada Incorporation as required.”

The Agharbana that what he ignored is the justification for this case by the foreign embassies claim of surprise, and puts more of a question mark, especially since the dead and the wounded foreigners – he said – they were carrying more than 13 Arab nationality and foreign, including American, French and Germans and Britons.

In response to the allegations, which says that the Houthi foreign victims were carrying a weapon spokesman denied the allegations Damaj health, stressing that all the dead and wounded, foreign students are aware of a legitimate area of ​​Dar Al-Hadith Dammaj and do not have any relation to any disputes or problems.

He added: “I have known since its founding modern center peaceful approach did not cause any problems but when he wanted to Houthis have recently completed their control over the province of Saada and argument and the stomach.”

For his part, Hassan Hashedi media, official activities and programs in the People’s Committee to lift the siege of Incorporation, Incorporation, the issue of human rights is the issue of the demand excellence and have no sectarian character.

Hashedi said: “The Dar Al-Hadith area under the Incorporation of more than thirty years of sectarian tolerance with flags from around the Zaidi and what is being said today is the thought of an outsider in the Yemeni society has nothing to do Balsideh Balhafieh not.”

Crimes and violations of Incorporation

He spoke in favor of Abimi, President of the Media Center human rights, for the humanitarian and human rights in the case of Incorporation confirming that the provisions of Houthi on the Saada province by force of arms to pay humanitarian relief organizations and human rights to leave the area with the exception of the International Red Cross, who said that their presence is the other became symbolic as it is not able to move without Houthi guidance and acceptance of its terms unfair – he said.

The Abimi: “The Houthis did not hesitate to commit murder against disagreed opinion, thought and approach based on what is happening today from the siege of the Incorporation and not allow food to the citizens as well as forcing people Saada, particularly women food industry for those who are called Mujahideen.”

He also spoke Abimi for what he called violations against children who have a number have been imprisoned on charges of escape from the camps Houthi packed – he said – junior age, defendants in the same time Houthi group to mobilize children to mobilize wrong and portray both disagreed that they are agents of America and Israel.

According to the president of the Center of Information jurist has reached it Houthis to do anti-bombing houses and expelled them from their areas after the confiscation of all property noting that tens of thousands of people remain displaced to this day can not return to their homes.

He criticized the Abimi the role of human rights organizations and the media, which he said that her work was confined only to the major cities after it ignored what is happening in Sa’ada, Al Jawf, argument and welcome, saying that the file of those killed and injured in Saada in general, and Damaj especially will be presented to the courts of local and international, will continue the case until the end.

Confiscation of relief convoys

Abdullah Al Shaibani, one of the facilities for relief convoys that were heading to the area of ​​Incorporation, is also reported that an armed group belonging to the Houthis intercepted on their way and the confiscation of the content of the truck loaded with food and medicine, which was accompanied by his abduction, and he and his colleagues for a week.

Shaibani said: “I have not only Houthis Bhpsona but they looted everything that we have of the cost of mobile phones and prevented us from communicating with our families and even food, which forced us to parting with the rest of the prisoners in the Hadra one the remainder of our money did not reach the hands of the Shi’ite.”

Turning Shaibani, to the scale of the suffering that endured after their release from custody in particular has been stripped Houthis of all expenses and mobile phones that have not returned to them – as he put it – but during the return, saying that food aid and medicines were confiscated full to the stores Houthi did not reach the beneficiaries until the moment though demand active media Alquili rational, continuous Houthis, returns the convoy or delivered to the beneficiaries.

He concluded by saying: “We have met Bmutnin detainees in the prisons of Houthi false charges, including failure to pay Zakat to Mr. Abdul-Malik al.”

SA’ADA, Jan. 11 – Over 1,200 children living in Damaj in North Yemen’s Sa’ada Governorate continue to suffer the consequences of conflict between Houthis and Salafis. A Houthi blockade on the area – commenced on October 15, 2011 – has had severe economic and humanitarian consequences on the area’s residents.

Five children were killed and 23 injured as a result of shelling by the Houthis in Damaj. A further four children have died as a result of dehydration, according to Soror Al-Wadee, a Salafi spokesman in Damaj.

Until now, children have not attended school, as two of the three schools in Damaj continue to be occupied by Houthis.

Damaj, home to the Sunni-Salafi minority, has a population of 15,000 people. Fierce clashes have taken place between majority Shiite-Houthis and the Sunni-Salafi minority, leaving dozens of people on both sides killed and hundreds injured.

The Houthis – who entered six rounds of war with the government between 2004 and 2010 – are militarily advanced and have possess tanks, mortar-shells, machine guns and artillery, according to a Yemeni team of human rights activists and media members who visited the area early December.

So far the ICRC has been the only organization to travel to Damaj, according to Rabab Al-Rifai, an ICRC communications officer.

“Local and international organizations were not able to provide humanitarian aid because of the siege.” Al-Rifai said.

“Farms were damaged after the Houthis have blocked the diesel and fuel access to the area,” a farmer in Damaj told the Yemen Times over the phone.

Despite a suspension of active conflict after a ceasefire was brokered by a local tribal mediation committee, what’s left of the blockade continues to impede the transport of humanitarian aid to the community, said Al-Rifai.

She went on to explain how the ICRC had to ask for permission from the Houthis to enter Damaj one month ago in order to provide food and medications, including babies’ milk, which wasn’t available in the local market. Permission was later granted to the ICRC to enter.

The conflict in Damaj, involving the use of heavy weapons, has caused severe damage, both to property and to lives.

“When we arrived, I saw children come out of houses with big smiles on their faces, like they were in a big prison,” said Mohammed Al-Ahmadi, a Yemeni journalist who visited the area last December.

Al-Wadee said that when the Ministry of Health sent needed medications three days ago, the Houthis took almost two-thirds of the aid for themselves.

Abd Al-Malik Al-Houthi, the Houthis’ leader, in a telephone conversation with the Yemen Times, denied all charges leveled against by locals in Damaj.

“The road to Damaj is open and there are no obstacles for any organizations,” he said.

At least 94 children have been killed and 240 others wounded by gunshots or shelling in Yemen since civil unrest began in February 2011, according to UNICEF.

Interview with prominent Yemeni Civil Rights activist, Ahmed Saif Hashid

Filed under: Civil Rights, Civil Society, Transition, Yemen, protest statements, reconfigurations — by Jane Novak at 2:21 pm on Thursday, January 26, 2012

Source link: Akhbaral Yemen:

- Altagheer squares seemed to have changed a lot, which rises concerns regarding differences among constituents of these squares. Do you think that the change squares of 2012 is different from that of 2011, what are the reasons?

There has been no difference, the change square still under control of Islah opposing party that is actually heavily saturated with tribal ideology and fundamentalism. The party, with its influential powers, is the major reason behind constant tensions and violations committed against revolutionaries. These powers cause the anti-saleh regime revolution and its goals to become weak and unable to achieve brilliant success. They are hindering the silent society segment from joining the revolution, and had this party not steered the revolution since its first day, it would have been succeeded since months, if not within one or two months. It is the influential regime-affiliates Islah who conspired against an abortive revolution and let many opportunities missing, starting with Dignity Friday, then the Taiz holocaust of the change square, and finally the life rally. They changed the Sana’a square into a jail for revolutionaries. Unfortunately this is the truth that should be known.

- What are the latest developments of the committee formed to tackle disputes occurred last month between Houthi and Islah affiliates?

The other joint meeting parties (JMPs) actually played a secondary role in relation to the Islah party, which plays, represented by its influential powers, the most crucial role at change square of Sana’a. The role of the other parties is no more than decoration of an alleged partnership that is much more pitiful than be condemned, and had there been minimum of independence of those parties, a mutual decision making process, there would not have been such a difficult situation. The violated rights of revolutionaries would be stopped as well as the unilateral decision making process since first day, yet these violations continued and became more intense recently. In fact, the other (JMPs) can neither take decisions nor can they stop any violations, but are only a decoration of the leaderships’ influencing in Islah. I call these parties to revolt against all of Islah unilateralism and the crimes committed against revolutionaries. What add insult to injury is the daily violations committed by revolution-defaming Islah party, which is more atrocious than the regime we all demand its step-down.
(Read on …)

Official statement of the Beirut Conference on Yemen

Filed under: Post Saleh, Transition, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 1:43 pm on Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Beirut Declaration

Issued by the national conference, “the Yemen that we desire”


January 21, 2012

Organized by al-Tagheer for Defending Rights and Freedoms, a national conference entitled as “The Yemen that we desire” was held during 18-19 January, 2012.

It was participated by several young activists of the youth revolution squares, politicians, journalists and academicians with various backgrounds.

During the 2 day-conference, the major issues related current situation in Yemen, specially the peaceful youth revolution, the southern case and Sada’a cases, were discussed. As well as, latest developments on the national arena.

The major topics were as follows:

- The reality of people youth revolution, prospects and achievements

- The civil state

- The political participation of youth and woman

- The transitional justice

The participants asserted the following:

(Read on …)

Oman, pleeeeeeeeeeeeease take him

Filed under: Post Saleh — by Jane Novak at 9:44 am on Thursday, January 26, 2012

Maybe he can have al Beidh’s old house.

Yemen has a long history of exiling former politicians to neighboring countries, and the deal always includes political passivity and non-interference in Yemen’s internal affairs.

NYR | YemenPost | Yemeni outgoing President Ali Abdullah Saleh has sought asylum in Yemen’s rich neighbor, Sultanate of Oman, the American News Agency Reuters reported on Tuesday citing diplomats.

Oman is still hesitant to accept his offer for fear that it would have a detrimental effect on any future relationship with Yemen, the unidentified diplomats added.

Saleh has left Yemen on Sunday for USA, taking a connecting flight from Oman and this prompted many analysts to draw out an inference that Saleh is intending to live in the Gulf rich neighbor for the rest of his life.

Local and international news agencies reported that Saleh’s elder Son, Ahmed, who commands the elite Republican Guards, the country best equipped and trained military troops, has been to Oman’s capital of Muscat by the time his father stopped over there reroute to USA.

Ahmed’s visit to Oman believed to be for arrangements of his father’s permanent stay in exile.

Yemen’s Air Force uprising spreads to seven provinces

Filed under: Military, Transportation, photos/gifs — by Jane Novak at 6:56 pm on Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The Air Force wants to overthrow the president’s brother.


Al Shawa: The (pro-rev) army (led by Ali Mohsen al Ahmar) said in a statement yesterday that Mohammed Saleh al Ahmar left in a Russian cargo plane yesterday that took off from Sanaa airport, in “the process of smuggling money abroad after the protests plaguing the rest of the pillars of the family and the most recent sit-air forces to demand the dismissal of Mohamed Saleh al Ahmar, who is about to catch up with his brother Ali, God’s favor, as a result of these protests.”

Talk about the pot calling the kettle black; Ali Mohsen is another big thief and murderer.

Actually Wednesday was the fifth day but details in English:

Yemen troops demand dismissal of Air Force chief (AFP)

SANAA — Thousands of soldiers continued sit-ins Tuesday for a second day in Yemen demanding the “official” ouster of the Air Force commander they accuse of corruption, AFP correspondents and military officials said.

They are demanding the dismissal of General Mohammed Saleh al-Ahmar, a half brother of President Ali Abdullah Saleh who left Yemen on Sunday for the United States following a year-long uprising against his 33 years in power. (Read on …)

Many southerners remain committed to two state soluton

Filed under: South Yemen, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 11:55 am on Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The southern issue in a post Saleh-immunity world

As I wrote last year, I agree with the concept of a temporary federalism with a guaranteed referendum on unity in the southern provinces in a few years, if just to allow some breathing space for the children to get healthy again. However the problem as elsewhere is a crisis of credibility.

Southerners often speak of the al Ahmars and al Zindani with as much disrepute as Saleh, so the new unity government seems to them an extension of “northern” power (just as many of the Youth Revolutionaries see it as an extension of the Saleh regime). The National Revolutionary Council included dozens of southerners, without any prior discussion, and they all immediately resigned. However with all the international meddling now, there’s room for the southerners to gain some concessions and a time table that is internationally recognized.

At the same time, the southern leaders have failed to implement any structures or mechanisms of legitimacy and representation, or to permit a transfer of executive power within the movement. There is a step that comes after marches, rallies and protests, and they haven’t taken it since 2007. A disconnect among the publics remains in place, largely a result of media repression and extremely low infrastructure penetration.

It also should be clear to southerners that there is going to be no international support for an independent state no matter how righteous their cause or how many bloody photos they publish. The idea that the UN will care that Saleh violated UN res 924 and 931 in 1994 is ridiculous in light of the fact the Security Council did nothing when Saleh recently violated res 2014 and kept murdering unarmed protesters in Sanaa and Taiz. Saleh’s immunity covers all his war crimes in the south, as well as against the protesters and in Saada.

International efforts in Yemen remain focused on perpetuating “stability” and maintaining a pliable client-state. But at least there is some attention now, and it might be a good idea to take advantage of it while things are still in flux.

WaPo Southerners say Saleh and his northern tribesmen have denied them their share of oil revenue; about 80 percent of Yemen’s oil production is located in the south. They say the government dismissed many southerners from military and government jobs, denying them access to even local power, and point out that the governors of all seven southern provinces are from the north. Southerners also accuse influential northerners of grabbing land in the south for personal gain.

The movement’s more radical leaders want an immediate separation from the north, returning to the pre-1990 geography. Moderate leaders seek a federal system, where more power is devolved to the south. After five years, a referendum for self-determination would decide whether the south would remain part of a united Yemen or secede, much like what took place in southern Sudan last year.

With Saleh agreeing to cede power, Arab and Western diplomats worry that a failure to address the south’s grievances could handcuff Yemen’s transition, the worst-case scenario being another civil war.

Nasser al Weddady, effective cyber activist for civil rights globally

Filed under: Civil Rights, mentions — by Jane Novak at 9:32 am on Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Niiiiice, long time friend of this website, Yemen and me personally, Naser al Weddady gets a nice write up in the Atlantic recognizing his work and his amazing contribution to supporting freedom and civil rights in some of the darkest corners of earth, the Middle East. Naser helped me a lot with strategy, advice and moral support for both of the campaigns for al Khaiwani (2005, 2008) and his door is always open when I’m confused (or furious). A very smart guy, Nasser is dedicated to changing the world and is actually doing it. Read it all at the Atlantic.

Thats funny, so I thought maybe I should stop gushing about Naser for a minute and read the entire article (I got the link off twitter) before I posted it and there I was too:

Testifying to the global reach of the cyber activists, Jane Novak, a New Jersey housewife, has established herself as a highly-regarded source on all things Yemen, even, at one point, consulting with the U.S. State Department. Her Twitter feed and blog,, are consulted by activists and journalists. She is well-known among policy makers, activists and reporters in the country’s besieged capital, Sana’a. And she has never been to Yemen.

“She doesn’t speak a word of Arabic, she hasn’t set foot in the Middle East, but she still became an authority,” Weddady says. He claims her influence helped secure the 2008 release of Yemeni journalist Abdulkarim al-Khawaini, who had been convicted of defaming President Ali Abdullah Saleh.

To clarify, I gave a 2008 presentation at the Carnegie Institute, at the invitation of State, on media repression in Yemen. I said many of the attacks on press freedom are retribution for journalists who exposed mass corruption at the highest levels of the US allied Saleh regime.

Its funny that Naser describes the fact that I don’t speak Arabic or visit Yemen in a positive light, when the na-na-nana-na crowd always tries to use it to depreciate my work and me personally. My ten thousand Yemeni friends don’t hold it against me though.

Yemeni child malnutrition among highest in world

Filed under: Children, Demographics, Yemen, poverty/ hunger — by Jane Novak at 8:46 am on Wednesday, January 25, 2012

(Corrected: My dyslexia or perhaps wishful thinking had the title as lowest when it should have read highest.)

In 2005 when i started paying attention to this stat, it was about 46% of children were physically stunted from malnutrition, and of course those numbers were higher in some areas specifically in Saada. And the sad reality is that now 58% of all Yemeni kids are too small for their age and many die of malnutrition.

Along with physical stunting often comes permanent brain damage, a lower IQ and cognitive faculties. Its important to reverse this trend ASAP through international cooperation and support: feeding centers, plump-n-nut, school lunches etc. The problem always was that the corrupt officials in the Yemeni regime stole the vast majority of international aid. Here in the new improved transparent Yemen, that should be less of a problem in theory. Many of the donors are in fact stepping up to the plate.

UNICEF official voices concern over child malnutrition in Yemen [24/January/2012] Saba: SANAA, Jan. 24 (Saba)- UNICEF Regional Director Maria Calivis concluded on Tuesday a two-day visit to Yemen where she saw first-hand the impact of malnutrition on children’s health.

“This year alone, half a million children in Yemen are likely to die from malnutrition or to suffer lifelong physical and cognitive consequences resulting from malnutrition if we don’t take action. Malnutrition is preventable. And, therefore, inaction is unconscionable,” Calivis said.

“Conflict, poverty and drought, compounded by the unrest of the previous year, the high food and fuel prices, and the breakdown of social services, are putting children’s health at great risks and threatening their very survival.”

With 58 per cent of children stunted, Yemen has the second highest rate of chronic malnutrition among children in the world after Afghanistan. Acute malnutrition affects as many as 30 per cent of children in some parts of the country, nearing the levels observed in south Somalia, and twice as high as the internationally recognized emergency threshold. (Read on …)

Raada, al Baydah Yemen celebrates AQAP withdrawal

Filed under: Counter-terror, Islamic Imirate, Security Forces, state jihaddists — by Jane Novak at 8:24 am on Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The al Qaeda operatives that occupied Raada have all departed, to the great jubilation of the town. Tribal mediation resulted in the immediate release of three al Qaeda detainees, including Nabil al Dhahab, a promise to install more conservative leaders that implement Sharia law and a promise to release the rest of the listed al Qaeda detainees (12 more) later, when the media spotlight fades. The town celebrated the fanatics departure with gunfire in the air and gathering on the streets. The agreement followed heavy clashes between tribal fighters and the violent al Qaeda cult known as “Ansar al Sharia.” The seven tribes surrounding al Baydah joined together against al Qaeda and the tribal delegation was comprised of 35 notable dignitaries.

Sheikh Khalid al Dhahab said in a later newspaper interview: “the remnants of the Saleh regime facilitated the gunmen to enter the city Radaa and the idea of formation and the establishment of the “solution and the contract” and the requirement by the “supporters of sharia law” to change the heads of districts and directors of offices services in the city of Radaa is to legitimize the rule of al-Qaeda through the establishment of Islamic emirate in Radaa, and remnants of the Saleh regime seek to make Radaa Islamic emirate.”

al Tagheer, link

Yemen’s parliament’s term expired in 2011, so how did they grant Saleh immunity in 2012?

Filed under: GCC, Parliament, Post Saleh, Protest Fatalities, Trials, USA — by Jane Novak at 11:14 am on Tuesday, January 24, 2012

There are many moves afoot within Yemen and internationally that dispute the unprecedented immunity deal for 33 years of Saleh’s crimes as well as that of his cohorts. However, the Yemeni parliament, that has been sitting since 2003, when it was elected to a four year term, was scheduled for elections in 2009 and voted itself a two year extension into 2011. I am checking but I can’t find anyone who recalls a new law being issued where they voted themselves another term extension.

(Update: the 2009 law grants a two year extension until they elect a new parliament in 2011, ambiguous language at best.

Update 2: a handy link from Yemen Parliament Watch that indicates parliament is operating outside the scope of the law: “The report indicated that the constitutional period of the parliament ended in February 2011 where the parliament had finished its six years stipulated constitution as well as the additional two years.”

Update 3: there is also a stipulation in the constitution that parliament can be extended when facing war, natural disaster or unrest, but I’m assuming that had to have been done formally, and within the scope of the term, not by some GPC mind meld.

Update 4: the amnesty was issued while Parliament was legally on vacation or in recess.)

Original post continues: A political deadlock ensued following the 2006 presidential election wherein the GPC thwarted the implementation of a proportional representation system (as opposed to a “winner takes all” single district method) and other electoral reforms, prompting the opposition JMP to boycott parliament altogether. Without the implementation of the previously agreed upon reforms, the parliament voted itself a two year extension and rescheduled elections for 2011. (In order to thwart elections in 2011, the SCER also disqualified the voter rolls en mass.) There was no new parliamentary election in 2011 and no official law passed rescheduling the election and extending their terms as far as I know. Therefore there is no legitimate Yemeni parliament, just a bunch of old men stuck to their chairs for a decade.

So where is the legal foundation of this expired parliament’s vote to give the Sanaa regime immunity? More fundamentally, the people withdrew legitimacy from the Parliament, the Sanaa regime and dysfunctional political party system through a year of mass nationwide protests.

However, while many are working on the issue of Saleh’s immunity, I am much more concerned with the implementation of the proportional representative system in order to undermine the hegemony of both the GPC and Islah who were both artificially empowered by the GCC plan. Proportional representation will allow for the growth of new parties, minority representation and probably more women in political office. It appears that the only way to get the task done is through a public referendum, as the same illegitimate GPC dominated parliament that stalled on the issue for five years will likely continue to block it.

The proportional system has a national consensus, and it has been repeatedly been endorsed by a variety of Yemeni groups from the JMP in 2005 to the tribally based National Dialog Committee in 2009 to the Yemeni Youth Revolution that took to the streets in 2011.

Had the PR system been enacted as agreed upon in 2006, allowing for authentic political growth and representative parties to compete in 2009, the revolution might not have been necessary. So its important not to allow history to repeat itself, especially with this crucial and long overdue element of the overall package of electoral reform.

There is more on the other illegalities of the unprecedented and illegal amnesty plan below from Human Rights Watch and the YCTJ:

Press Release
By The Yemeni Center for Transitional Justice Concerning the Approval of the House of Representatives of the Immunity Law

The Yemeni Center for Transitional Justice reviewed the law approved by the House of Representatives (Parliament) of the Republic of Yemen concerning the award of immunity to the President of the Regime of Ali Abdullah Saleh and his supporters. As YCTJ confirms its previous position with respect to this law, that the law lacks the minimum principles of human justice, and is openly in violation of honorable Islamic Jurisprudence, international laws, and is in breach of the international human rights conventions/agreements to which Yemen is signatory, YCTJ now also calls for the application of real true transitional justice without any selectivity, forgery or deliquescent.
(Read on …)

Al Qaeda blocks food to starving Yemeni children

Filed under: Abyan, Aden, Children, Refugees, Yemen, poverty/ hunger — by Jane Novak at 7:48 pm on Sunday, January 22, 2012

Well over 100,000 residents of Zinzibar fled their homes (which were then thoroughly looted by al Qaeda which transported the bounty back to Marib) when al Qaeda occupied the city and others. The areas are still under occupation and only by surrendering their civil and political rights are residents allowed to return. The families are still living in about 60 schools in Aden, causing the city’s children to miss a year of school. The US-allied Yemeni regime is thought to have green lighted the al Qaeda expansion into Abyan, Shabwa and recently al Baydah order to create chaos and delay the political transition.

Yemen Post Yemeni children direly suffer due to the current political conditions and insecurity, particularly in South Yemen, said Rima Salah, Deputy Executive Director of he UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF). (Read on …)

Yemen’s Republican Guard bombs, kills four civilians while under UN/US immunity

Filed under: Post Saleh, Sana'a, Security Forces, War Crimes, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 7:19 pm on Sunday, January 22, 2012

Its like the Twilight Zone. If it was Russia and Turkmenistan, or China and North Korea, instead of the United States of America that granted immunity to Yemeni military commanders while they are on a continuous murder spree, it would be more comprehensible.

alSahwa: Forces of the Republican Guard bombarded on Saturday villages of Nihm, outskirt of Sana’a, using medium and heavy weapons, indicating that bombardment was arbitrary and intensive.

Local sources told that the forces used gun machines from mountains nearby to the villages, pointing out that no casualties fell.

Forces of the Republican Guard headed by Ahmed Ali Abdullah Saleh, son of the outgoing Yemeni president shelled on Tuesday killed four civilians including child in Bani Dihrah, a village of Arhab district, some 30 kilometers north of Sana’a.

For its part, Hood Organization for Human Rights and Freedoms affirmed that it received on Tuesday the corpses of the four killed civilians.

Hood said that forces of the Republican Guard rejected to allow human rights organizations to take the bodies of five civilians who were killed five months ago.

On Sunday, the Republican Guards bombarded villages of Bani Jarmooz and Bait Dihrah, using mortars and machine guns against civilians wounding several and damaging many properties.

Related: The international community leveled no sanctions on the Saleh regime whatsoever, no ban on weapons sales, no freezing of funds. Russia is still providing weapons, likely via a deniable proxy. Yemen owes Russia, its largest bilateral creditor, about six billion from prior weapons sales. A Russian-made ship loaded with heavy weapons including air-fighters, tanks and ammunition arrived in Hodeidah port on Thursday, sources of the port revealed.

The sources said the weapons are to be distributed to those military camps that are still loyal to the outgoing President Ali Abdullah Saleh.

Hundreds of protesters headed the port, demanding the port officials to uncover the sorts of these weapons and its producing country.

They affirmed that they would provide a notification for the Attorney General, demanding all local and international organizations to work to uncover those states that are involved in providing the regime with weapons to kill protesters.

Yemeni delegation meets ICC

Filed under: Civil Rights, Donors, UN, Post Saleh, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 7:06 pm on Sunday, January 22, 2012

-Press Release-

Yemeni delegation meets with the International Criminal Court’s Officials

(The Hague, 22/01/2012) On Friday, January 20, 2012, a delegation of representatives of the Yemeni civil society and International non-governmental Human Rights organizations led by Dr. Yasin Al Qubati, President of the Yemen Centre for Transitional Justice (YCTJ), and Mrs. Anna Kotzeva, Director of the Peace and Justice Initiative (PJI) based in The Hague, visited the seat of the International Criminal Court (ICC) at The Hague, Netherlands, and met with officials from the Office of the Prosecutor (OTP), the Presidency and the Registry to discuss the way forward and the procedures for the ratification by Yemen of the Rome Statute, the treaty which established the ICC.

The delegation also informed the ICC officials of the recent developments in Yemen and pledged to submit a documented communication under article 15 of the Rome Statute to contain data on Crimes Against Humanity that have been committed against civilians at tens of Yemeni cities by the Yemeni President Ali Abdallah Saleh regime’s Security Forces and Death Squads since the start of the Yemeni uprising in 11Februry 2011.

The delegation informed the OTP of more than 2000 cases of death and more than 14000 cases of injury, in addition to more than 1500 cases of forced disappearances and 3000 cases of arbitrary detention, most of them are documented. The delegation said that the Yemeni civil society organizations are visiting now different cities of Yemen to collect evidence and document crimes thus far to have taken place in Yemen since 11-02-2011, adding that there are significant indications of mass graves hidden in Yemen from 1978 up till now. These mass graves include particularly victims of Saadah’s six wars that took place between 2004 and 2010.

The delegation concluded their meeting with the ICC’s OTP by promising to work towards the signature and ratification by the new Yemeni elected government of the ICC’s Rome Statute to ensure that Yemen will accept the jurisdiction of the ICC to prosecute the perpetrators of these crimes.

The delegation’s visit was followed by a reception organised by the Peace and Justice Initiative in the Mercure Hotel in the Hague Centre. Around thirty diplomats and workers in International Tribunals and Courts attended the reception and listened to Dr. Al Qubati providing information documented by photos and videos about the escalation of the events in Yenen, with a focus on the victims affected by the crimes committed by the Yemeni regime and mass punishments of the communities in all the cities including depreviation from all general services like Electricity , water, gaz for huoses and fuel for operating all kinds of machiniries. to oppress the uprising. Dr. Al Qubati pressed for the international community to consider the Yemeni president Ali Abdallah Saleh and all the members of his family in the commendres of the army to have lost legitimacy and to refer Saleh and other representatives of his regime to the ICC.

Yemen’s Saleh leaves for Oman, en route to US

Filed under: Post Saleh, USA, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 6:23 pm on Sunday, January 22, 2012

What an abhorrent and indefensible US policy, counter-productive as well as contrary to international law. Saleh must be blackmailing the US, there’s no other reasonable explanation. Beyond giving him total immunity while not barring him from future political participation, the US is not confiscating all the money Saleh and his family stole to return to the Yemeni treasury, and the whole GCC transition plan re-empowers the Saleh’s ruling GPC party and elevates Islah, which by itself is causing a lot of consternation in Yemen. Its really a shame.

Beeb: Yemen’s veteran President, Ali Abdullah Saleh, has left the country to travel to the US for medical treatment, Yemeni officials say. (Read on …)

A letter supporting activist Ms. Bushra Maqtari under threats in Taiz

Filed under: Islah, Media, Religious, Taiz, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 12:00 pm on Sunday, January 22, 2012

I add my support. Google translation below:

بيان إدانة واستنكار

في استهداف واضح ومتعمد لحرية التفكير والتعبير، واستمرار لنهج الإقصاء والاستقواء بالدين؛ تتعرض الكاتبة بشرى المقطري لحملة تكفير من قبل جماعات متطرفة تعمد إلى استحضار ثقافة إلغاء العقل، وتجريم الفكر الحر.

وأطلت القوى الظلامية المدججة بفتاوى الإلحاد وتغليب منطق التكفير على رؤى التفكير مجدداً بحملة واسعة النطاق على خلفية مقال كتبته بشرى المقطري الناشطة في أهم ساحة من ساحات الثورة، ساحة الحرية بتعز، لتستعيد موروث التكفير، وتعمل على التحريض ضد الكاتبة بهدف إرهابها، ومنعها من ممارسة حقها في التعبير عن الرأي، قبل أن تتطور تلك الحملة حتى وصلت حدّ التحريض على استهداف حياة المقطري، وقيادة مجاميع متطرفة للمطالبة بإدانتها واستهداف حياتها بحجة الإساءة إلى الدين والذات الإلهية.

إن التكفير هو الداء الرجيم الذي دفعت اليمن ثمنه باهظا من ثلاثينيات القرن الماضي، وقتل بسببه أفضل علماء اليمن ومفكريها بتهمة اختصار القرآن، وشنت بواسطته حرب ضارية على الثورة اليمنية في الشمال والجنوب بتهمة الإلحاد والكفر.

وكان التكفير هو السلاح الذي اغتيل بواسطته أهم مناضلي الثورة اليمنية أيضاً، مثلما كان أحد أهم أسلحة علي عبد الله صالح الذي نشره في طول اليمن وعرضها، حيث تشهد اليمن هذه الأيام سقوط مدن وبلدات بأيدي التنظيمات التكفيرية التي تقاوم الدولة وتقيم إماراتها الخاصة التي تمارس فيها نهجاً وحشياُ في التعامل مع البشر، فتنتهك الحقوق والحريات، وتعدم الأبرياء أو تشوه أجسادهم بزعم إقامة الحدود كما يحدث في جعار وزنجبار ورداع.

إن شن حملة التكفير على الكاتبة بشرى المقطري على إثر مقال كتبته خلال الأسبوع الماضي هو امتداد لثقافة النظام الذي قامت الثورة ضده، والصمت الجبان على هذه الحملة التكفيرية هو معادل لفعل التكفير. (Read on …)

Yemen Air Force revolts against corrupt commander, Saleh’s half brother

Filed under: Corruption, Military, Post Saleh, Sana'a, protests — by Jane Novak at 10:38 am on Sunday, January 22, 2012

Shoe throwing at the presidents relatives is always a good sign however the arrested show throwing air force officer is probably in pretty poor shape right now.

Yemen Post: Hundreds of officers and soldiers protested inside the International Sana’a Airport on Sunday, demanding to sack commander of the Air Forces, Mohammad Saleh Al-Ahmar, half-brother of the outgoing President Ali Abdullah Saleh.

One officer told Yemen Post on condition of anonymity that five tanks and many military vehicles belonging to the Central Security and Special Guard Forces rushed to the airport with the aim of dispersing the protesting soldiers.

“However, Major General Ahmed Ali Al-Ashwal, Chief of General Staff, immediately headed to the airport and ordered the forces not to assault approximately 500 protesters.” he added.\

He further said that negotiations are being continuing between Al-Ashwal and some officers of the Air Forces, indicating that they insist on the resignation of Al-Ahmar and meet all other demands.

Sources said that Guards of Al-Ahmar arrested an officer, Omar Al-Hatimi, who loudly criticized Al-Ahmar and threw his shoes at him inside a meeting hall of the Air Forces. (Read on …)

al Qaeda in Yemen attacks traditional “witch doctor” in Raada; five dead in clashes

Filed under: Islamic Imirate, al-Bayda, state jihaddists — by Jane Novak at 10:33 am on Sunday, January 22, 2012

Like there’s not enough headaches, al Qaeda is mandating (by violence) what type of health care people can have. I don’t know anything about the type of traditional medicine practiced in al Baydah, or even what a witch doctor is, although some traditional and herbal remedies have been shown to have medicinal value in other parts of the world. However people have the right to choose who they talk to about their illnesses without some wild eyed fanatic subjecting them to physical punishment. Then there’s more blah blah about the regime loyalists facilitating the al Qaeda take over and other article below the fold about the failure of negotiations.

Yemen Post: Three tribesmen were killed and several others were wounded on Saturday as Al-Qaeda militants attacked the house of a well-known witch-doctor in Rada’a of Baidha governorate. (Read on …)

Immunity law for Saleh passes the parliament

Filed under: Donors, UN, GCC, Parliament, Presidency, War Crimes, Yemen, reconfigurations — by Jane Novak at 10:36 am on Saturday, January 21, 2012

Its astounding that the GCC plan legitimizes the parliament, whose terms expired in 2009, to grant immunity to Saleh but doesn’t require those who have immunity to retire. The uncontested election is a waste of time and money as the international community undermined the concept of Yemenis right to self determination by ignoring their demands entirely. Its a veneer of democracy on a totally undemocratic process. The GCC plan also empowers the existing political parties and elites to a level beyond their credibility with the public.

SANA’A, Jan. 21 (Saba) – The parliament endorsed on Saturday a law granting president Ali Abdullah Saleh total immunity from legal and judicial prosecution.

This law also applies to the civil, military, and security officials, who were involved with the president in operations based on political motives rather than terrorist acts.

In addition, the parliament endorsed the recommendation for Vice President Abdo Rabbo Mansour Hadi to be the consensual and sole candidate for the early presidential elections to be held on 21 February.

The adopted law was voted on in the presence of the government and all members of the parliament.

al Jazeera re-opens in Yemen; no news on al Ayyam

Filed under: Media, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 10:11 am on Thursday, January 19, 2012

Its lovely that al Jazeera got its license back after the office was looted, but there’s a trial going on regarding al Ayyam which was shot up with women and children inside and even the state’s witnesses are now admitting the evidence and prior testimony is bogus. When can al Ayyam re-publish? Its really a sore spot in the south and across Yemen.

Yemen Fox: Yemeni Information Minister Ali al-Emrani undertook to reopen the office of al-Jazeera TV Channel in Sana’a and return licenses to the crew of the office to practice the profession.

That came in a meeting gathered Information Minister Ali al-Emrani and Envoy of International Federation of Journalists in the Middle East Muneer Zaarur on Wednesday.

For his part, Secretary-General of Journalist Syndicate Marwan Dammaj reviewed the issue of al-Jazeera TV Channels and what it was subjected to from confiscating, looting, closing and pursuing correspondents and staff and canceling license.

Interview with Yemeni Human Rights Minister Hooria Mansour

Filed under: Civil Rights, Ministries, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 9:53 am on Thursday, January 19, 2012

Excellent interview!! Ms Mansour has a big job and perhaps it is the most critical ministry. If respect for human rights is the linchpin of the new Yemen, then she is correct, the youth will be satisfied, AQAP’s reach will diminish and the free market economy can take root.

Yemen Fox: Houria Mashhoor is one of Yemeni women who rebelled against Yemeni traditions and decided to take part in everything that used to be restricted to men.

Mashhoor is a Yemeni influential politician who is reputed to have neutral positions; even though she was a part of the previous regime.

Mashhoor has defected to the Yemeni revolution and become the spokeswoman for the youth revolutionary council. After the Saudi-brokered initiative had been signed in November, the conciliatory government was formed accordingly and Mashhoor was among the ministers who have been nominated. (Read on …)

Saleh: immunity for me but not for thee

Filed under: GCC, Political Opposition, Presidency, War Crimes, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 9:37 am on Thursday, January 19, 2012

Update: Saleh’s subordinates would only get immunity in “political cases:”

A Yemeni draft law granting immunity to the outgoing president, Ali Abdullah Saleh, from prosecution over the killing of protesters was amended on Thursday to limit the protection his aides would enjoy, a minister said.

The draft law, which has been heavily criticized by rights groups, the United Nations and Yemeni protesters, will now shield the aides only in “political cases,” Legal Affairs Minister Mohammad Makhlafi told Reuters.

The illegitimate Parliament still has to vote on it to give it a veneer of legitimacy just like the uncontested election has no point other than to provide international cover for appointing Hadi. The US should just recognize him as president and avoid the unnecessary expenditures. Easing Saleh out of office was never a viable plan and only wasted a year, destroyed the economy and allowed AQAP to flourish. Sooner or later, Saleh has to be kicked out.

Original: Saleh the mass murderer, objects to immunity for those he alleges tried to kill him in the mosque bombing, Ali Mohsen al Ahmar and Sheik Sadiq etc.

But Ali Mohsen’s crimes extend far beyond that one incident to include the conduct of the first five rounds of the Saada War as well as embezzlement, all types of black market smuggling, land appropriation and torture. The US cant grant immunity to everyone in Saleh’s regime and exclude the current and former opposition. UN envoy Ben Omar is trying to placate Saleh’s victims’ families with financial compensation and its their choice, but many already turned down hush money and blood money from the regime at the time of the murders. The notion that the families and the protesters are out of line somehow for demanding Saleh’s trial is Orwellian.

Yemen Times
A source close to negotiations told the Yemen Times that one of the disagreements on a political level stemmed from the fact that Saleh did not want the law to include his opponents Major General Ali Mohsen and the leaders of the Hashid Tribal confederation. Both were accused of the June 3 attack on the presidential compound, which left 12 dead and injured president Saleh and other key government figures.

In December, the Yemeni revolution turned towards institutions as employees of government institutions protested and went on strike, commonly demanding the prosecution of “corrupt” officials and mangers – many of whom are members of the General People’s Congress.

The proposed immunity law goes against their demands if it is approved in its current form. It suggests that seeks to grant immunity not only to Saleh, but also to all who worked with him in state, civil, military and security institutions during his rule.

Law expert Nabeela Al-Mufti, said: “The problem is that the law is too general, giving immunity to all who worked with Saleh for 33 years. This gives it a dangerous dimension.”

Another issue is the proposal that the law be implemented both inside and outside Yemen. “The Yemeni parliament cannot dominate the world parliaments and force them to implement the immunity,” said Al-Mufti.

Many Yemenis wonder whether or not Saleh or his fellows can be prosecuted outside of Yemen. According to Al-Mufti Saleh can be prosecuted outside of Yemen but his crime must have been committed in the prosecuting country. However, the International Criminal Court (ICC) can still receive cases against Saleh for crimes committed in Yemen – but any case must meet the ICC standards as a humanitarian or war crime.

“It is possible that a Yemeni person could raise a suit against Saleh for a crime that was committed in Yemen in any of the 81 countries that signed the Roma Law and became a member of the ICC,” Al-Mufti explained, adding that ICC procedures are complicated and lengthy but still possible.

Issues with the immunity law led to the idea of a Transitional Reconciliation Conference. The brainchild of UN envoy Jamal Benomar, the conference would serve as a way to bring together Yemen’s conflicting parties for a new beginning, forgetting past crimes but also proposing compensation to victims and their families – an idea that worked both in Morocco and South Africa

“The law denies individuals their right to prosecute; the concept of reconcilement should be by satisfaction not by force,” she added. “Any reconcilement should offer something to the victims’ families and whoever was harmed by Saleh’s regime.”

32 dead, 41 injured foreign students at Dammaj

Filed under: Dammaj — by Jane Novak at 9:14 am on Thursday, January 19, 2012

All the reporting about Dammaj is skewed one way or another. The article below is from Yemen Fox, an outlet of Gen. Ali Mohsen al Ahmar, and says the Houthis looted the relief convoys. The Houthis have an opposite story–the relief convoys were smuggling weapons into the school. It is sadly ironic that one of Ali Abdullah Saleh’s war crimes is the denial of international aid to the citizens in Houthi held areas of Saada for years, and now one of the main humanitarian issues regarding the current clashes is the lack of food in the school.

However the numbers of foreign students killed in the fighting are undisputed as is the fact that the siege is not completely lifted, impacting the women and children at the school. Only France and Russia called the school regarding the identity of the dead, although Sheik al Hajoree’s phone number is widely published on the web (usually in the context of refuting those who say they are collecting money for the school.)

Yemen Fox: Human Rights Information Center in Sana’a and Office of Media Coordination for beleaguered people of Dammaj condemned continuous violations by Houthis in Sa’adah against relief convoys for Dammaj Area.

“Despite the announcement of Houthis to lift blockade from Dammaj according to reconciliation convention sponsored by Sheik Hussein al-Ahmar, Houthis still denied access of relief convoys to Dammaj Area,” said Human Rights Information Center in Sana’a and Office of Media Coordination for beleaguered people of Dammaj in press release Sunday morning in Sana’a.

During the press release, Women’s Committee of Solidarity with the children and women of Dammaj was declared headed by Rasheeda al-Qaily, Member of Council of Peaceful Revolution Forces.

Human Rights Information Center in Sana’a and Office of Media Coordination for beleaguered people of Dammaj asserted that Houthis confiscated two relief convoys of Dammaj since the announcement of reconciliation convention, sponsored by Hussein al-Ahmar, one of which organized by Women’s Committee of Solidarity with the children and women of Dammaj estimated at more than YR 5 million.

Delegated member to accompany the relief convoy which started from the Change Square in Sana’a, Abdul-Malek al-Shaibani, said in the press conference that the convoy started from Sana’a on Friday 22 December after the announcement of the convention sponsored by Sheik Hussein al-Ahmar.

Shaibani added that Houthis held back the convoy in al-Amsheea from Harf Sufian side, adding that Houthis confiscated cell phones, copies of the Holy Quran, Janbyas and money of the committee accompanying the convoy. He pointed out that Houthis conveyed him to Al Amar Area and arrested him in a school used as prison for them.

“They emptied the load of the convoy and stole it,” said Shaibani, pointing out that the prison where he was arrested there was of other detainees who Houthis had arrested due to rejection to pay Zakat to Houthis.

Shaibani asserted that Houthis investigated him and accused him of transferring military supply to Dammaj, pointing out that focus of the investigation was concentrated on asking him about his doctrine. He said that they insulted the Companions of the Prophet in front of him in an attempt to provoke him.

During the press conference, the total number of dead foreigners fell in Dammaj was revealed. Wounded foreigners were 41 while dead foreigners reached 32 people. They dead were 5 Indonesians, 5 Algerians, 4 Russians, 4 French, 4 Libyans, 2 of the Sudan, one Iraqi, 2 Americans, an Ethiopian, an Indian, a British, a Malaysian and a Somali.

The committee which organized the conference condemned the ignorance of embassies of states of those dead foreigners from following their citizens who died in Dammaj, pointing out that only French and Russian embassies had contacted Dammaj Center to inquire about the identities of their killed people.

The committee said that dead of Yemenis of Dammaj people during clashes with Houthis reached 41 people including 6 children and two women one of whom was old. The number of wounded of children and women reached 25 wounded including 6 children and 19 women.

Then the update from the Yemen Times has the Houthis accusing Saudi Arabia of instigating sectarianism, a run down on the fighting in Hajjah and battling accusations of state collusion: “The Houthis released a statement on Wednesday evening accusing Saleh’s 101st Brigade of handing military sites to pro-Salafi tribes in Kittaf. For his part, Al-Yamani denied the Houthis’ accusations and said they are baseless, insisting that the 101st Brigade, led by general Fadl Hasan, is neutral.”

Tribes give AQAP 24 hour deadline in al Baydah

Filed under: Islamic Imirate, Transition, al-Bayda — by Jane Novak at 8:50 am on Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Update: Tariq al Dhahab responds as al Masdar.

YPost: Tribal chieftains in the southeast province of Al-Baytha, some 260km southeast of the Yemeni capital of Sana’a, gave on Wednesday 24 hours for al-Qaeda militants to leave their town of Rada.

Earlier the day, local tribal dignitaries accused outgoing President Ali Abdullah Saleh of conniving with the terrorists and letting Rada falls into their control, as the army looked on militants with simple weapons take control of an entire town.

The militants took control of al-Baytaha’s main town of Rada on Monday, with the army looking on. (Read on …)

Witness: 100’s defected soldiers, protesters whipped, electrocuted, tortured inside Yemeni military camp

Filed under: Military, Sana'a, Transition, political violence, prisons, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 8:43 am on Wednesday, January 18, 2012

But its not a problem for the US, UN and GCC which all strongly endorse an immunity package for the Saleh regime and consider the Yemeni public a nuisance.

Yemen Post: The Yemeni Human Rights Organization, HOOD, has affirmed that hundreds of officers, troops and protesters are being detained and brutally tortured inside military camps affiliated to the outgoing President Ali Abdullah Saleh.
The body said that these soldiers were detained due their support to anti-regime protests.

Hood indicated that the Yemeni authorities have recently released 44 detainees from the Central Prison in Sana’a.

Yemen security and army services have arbitrarily detained hundreds of peaceful protesters across the country, subjecting them to torture and ill-treatment, since anti-government demonstrations began in February 2011.

“A military court has recently released four officers and troops of the Special Forces Service led by son of Saleh, Ahmed,” Hood said.”They were arrested on charges of taking part in anti-regime demonstrations.”

One of the released persons revealed that 75 protesters and 70 soldiers of the defected First Armored Division are being held inside a custody in Alsama’a military camp located in Arhab district of Sana’a governorate.

The protester told Yemeni activists that he was kidnapped from the capital in December, 2011, pointing out that he was immediately transferred to this camp.

He said he was subject to brutal forms of tortures, including electro-shock devices and beating with cables and whips, as he was blindfolded and handcuffed.

Yemenis have been demonstrating across the country demanding the release of hundreds of detainees held by Security services which are still controlled by people loyal to Saleh.

Yemeni activists had urged all international human rights organizations to press on the Yemeni regime to release all detainees who are subject to brutal torture.

The exact number of detainees being held by the authorities is unknown, but activists say that it could be as high as 1,400.

Saleh’s fingerprints on al Qaeda’s actions

Filed under: Al-Qaeda, Presidency, Yemen, state jihaddists — by Jane Novak at 1:32 pm on Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The analysis below by the Abaad Center has some correct information but is missing the facts that Nabil al Dhahab (brother of Tariq) was in the same PSO jail cell as his brother in law, Anwar al Awlaki, and later was on Syrian TV taking responsibility for the Damascus bombing, that was blamed on al Qaeda, link here.

It is probable that the National Security orchestrated the take over of Radaa, one town in the province of al Baydah. It was entirely true when I wrote that the Yemeni National Security transported Nasir al Wahishi, head of AQAP, from Marib to Shabwa in 2009 or 2008, whenever it was. The implications were and remain enormous.

There’s no way the US can feign ignorance anymore or that the collusion doesn’t go to the top. So what does the continued US support mean? It can’t be fear of Islah and fundamentalists when the US designed transition plan empowers Islah, endangers the democrats and puts the fractured regime back together, a regime that by its very nature is massively corrupt and prone to sporadic blood baths, and that has created, enabled and deployed al Qaeda for over a decade.

Then we get this: “Jane, my family are from Radaa. This ALQ stuff is load of rubbish. Ali Saleh’s troops entered the city on the pretext that the city had been taken over by ALQ when no such thing had happened. They then opened the prison and let everyone out. Opposition to Saleh in Radaa has been quite strong.” Others with family in Raada disagree and say its very scary, residents have been warned to stay indoors and men are arming themselves to protect their families.

Its clear that Saleh plans on delaying the “election” by any means possible. It was clear from day one that he would never relinquish his throne and that the US was helping him stall, first by announcing there was no post-Saleh planning and then by demanding Yemenis accept the clearly unworkable (and illegal) GCC plan. I’m mystified by US support of the Sanaa regime and all its elements (including Islah), when Saleh and the Yemeni security and intelligence forces are obvious and undeniable Al Qaeda puppet masters.

al Sahwa

Think-Tank: Absence of government, armed Houthi existence behind Al-Qaeda expansion A news analysis released by Abaad Centre for Studies and Research has said five factors supported Al-Qaeda existence in Rada’a of Baidha governorate:

First, planning of expansion in the stage that witnesses a weakness of the central government, as Al-Qaeda took this opportunity to enlarge in some eastern areas that lack the power of government.

Second, Rada’a is a predominantly tribal region and it witnessed provocations four months ago by militants who were affiliated to the Zaidi Shia Houthi group as they were walking around the town with their arms.

Third, forces of the Republican Guard did not deal with the militants seriously. A brother of Tariq Al-Dhahab who leads the militants was wounded, but when Tariq came to town was not interrupted and his positions located between Rada’a and Marib were not attacked.

Fourth, Al-Qaeda exploited the kinship between Al-Dhahab and Anwar Al-Awlaki, Al-Qaeda leader who was killed in a American drone strike last fall to expand.

Fifth, It used the detention of one of Al-Dhahab’s brother as a grief to provoke armed men to fight.

The analysis also indicated to the character of Al-Dhahab who led Al-Qaeda militants positioned in a archeological mosque in Rada’a.

” Tareq Al-Dhahab is a brother of a late prominent tribal leader of Rada’a” added the analysis. ” After the death of this leader, his nephew, Majed, was crowned as a leader, but Tareq did not accept that.”

” Tareq’s brother at the age of 35, Nabil, was submitted by Syrian authorities as he tried to cross the country to fight in Iraq in 2006.”

Al-Dhahab has criticized, in a comment to Marib Press, the detention of his brother, considering that as arbitrary, and pointing out that Nabil was imprisoned inside a jail of the Political Security, added the analysis.

” After the release of Anwar Al-Awlaki in 2007, Al-Dhahab angered on his tribe escaped to a region between Marib and Rada’a and gathered around dozens of militants who came from Al-Jawf, Marib, Shabwa and Baidha,” added the centre.

” Al-Dhahab generously spends money for his followers and sponsors scores of families, but his resources are still unknown up to date.”

The think-tank said the name of Al-Dhahab was not included in any operation of Al-Qaeda, he did not travel abroad, and was not known of his affiliation to Al-Qaeda, but the Yemeni authorities suspect that he was responsible for attacking a security checkpoint in Rada’a in May, 2011.

” The authorities have not stated about the event or attacked the region in which he has been basing for years” added it.

” Al-Dhahab emerged as a member of Al-Qaeda in his sermon on Friday, 13 January, 2012, after he along with approximately 80 militants stormed Rada’a, using light and medium weapons including RPG and gun machines,” added the analysis. ” They positioned inside an archeological mosque which has been shut down for 15 years.”

Its like a carbon copy of the Abyan events.

al Sahwa: – A tribal leader of Rada’a, Khalid Al-Dhahab, has said that the National Security coordinated with his brother, Tariq who leads Al-Qaeda militants, to capture Rada’a.

In a comment to Alarabya TV on Monday, Khalid said that the National Security and the former Interior Minister, Rashad Almasri, have been contacting Tariq for long period.

Al-Dhahab pointed out that he had suggested to the Yemeni regime to submit his brother, Tariq, but the regime procrastinated regarding his arrest.

Police open fire on Southern Movement anniversary demonstration

Filed under: Security Forces, South Yemen, War Crimes, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 2:45 pm on Monday, January 16, 2012 – Three protesters and two policemen were killed, and 20 others were wounded on Friday as security forces used live ammunition against supporters of the Southern Movement.

Medics said that 26 protesters were taken to receive treatment.

Thousands of the Southern Movement’s followers protested on Friday to mark the annual anniversary of the civil war erupted in 1986 between fictions of the ruling regime then.

Witnesses said forces of the Central Security used gas bombs, live ammunition to disperse the protesters.

Press reports quoted eyewitnesses as saying that snipers shot fire on the protesters from the back of security forces.

Yemeni human rights organizations and political parties have called to swiftly identify those responsible for the killing of protesters and bring them to justice.

Upcoming National Conference in Beirut: “The Yemen that we desire”

Filed under: Civil Society, Transition, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 2:43 pm on Monday, January 16, 2012

Yemen National Conference, “The Yemen that we desire”


Upcoming National Conference in Beirut: “The Yemen that we desire”

Sana’a, Yemen, January 16, 2012

On January 18 and 19, 2012, a Yemeni national conference will be held in Beirut, Lebanon entitled: The Yemen that we desire”. The conference is organized by the Change and Defense of Rights and Freedoms Organization, in cooperation with civil society organizations and media representatives. The conference will have active participation by youth representatives from various blocs, coalitions and alliances from the squares nationwide.

This conference comes at the threshold of a new phase of Yemen’s modern history, where an exceptional new awareness is being born. This is reflected in the determination of a courageous people and youth pushing towards reform. This new found awareness is linked to calls for a new Yemeni modern civil state based on the principles of freedom and equality and the rule of law. (Read on …)

Saleh loyalists organize militants in al Beydah: opposition, family member, etc.

Filed under: GPC, Yemen, al-Bayda — by Jane Novak at 12:54 pm on Monday, January 16, 2012

The US continues to freeze out the most democracy minded of the Yemeni population (as the unity government and GCC plan re-establishes the status quo and empowers traditionalist elements of society) in order to retain its CT investment and permissions, as the Sana’a regime mobilizes its terrorist paramilitary in order to prove the need. Its a very dangerous game. I thought Def Sec Gates was being dramatic when he said the US had “no post Saleh planning” in March 2011, but apparently not. Why we are continuing to support a regime that overtly enables terrorists at the expense and against the will of 22 million people is beyond me.

The US always insists the National Security is the cleanest of the intel services. It may be but its not saying much when we are comparing it to the PSO. There’s such a long list of double crosses involving the National Security specifically, and they are doing it again in the AQAP takeover of al Beydah. Yemen opposition has accused the outgoing President Ali Abdullah Saleh of supporting Al-Qaeda and help it control Yemeni towns and areas.

It said Saleh tries to persuade the global world that he is the only who can fight Al-Qaeda.

The Assistant Secretary General of the Yemeni Socialist Party, Yahya Abu Asboa, told an Emirati newspaper, Albyan, that he has information that Yemeni army and security forces loyal to Saleh facilitate the expansion of Al-Qaea.

” Saleh supports Al-Qaeda to disrupt the National Consensus government led by the opposition and make foreign states believe that Saleh’s ouster would strengthen Al-Qaeda” added he.

Al-Qaeda militants extensively expanded in Zinjbar of Abayn governorate, and nearly 5,000 Al-Qaeda militants and recruiters are currently existed at Azan of Shabow governorate.

It further said the main road linking between Shabwa and Abyan is completely controlled by the militants.

Political leaders of Al-Baidha governorate accused leaders of the General People Congress party headed by Saleh of complicity with the militants to capture the town of Rada’a.

A Yemeni journalist, Aref Al-Omari, affirmed that tribal leaders loyal to Saleh cooperated and coordinated with Al-Qaeda to take over Rada’a in attempt to shuffle the cards and hinder the holding of the early presidential election to be held on February 21.

He cited that the militants are led by Tareq Al-Dahab and Abdul-Salam Al-Nosairy, tribal leaders who are known as members of GPC.

Local sources told that Rada’a is not a fertile ground for Al-Qaeda, pointing out that the regime of Saleh previously attempted to bring militants to Rada’a, but they were faced and expelled by local residents.

The sources held military commanders of the Republican Guard existed in Rada’a responsible for allowing the militants to capture the town without any resistance.

So we have Mohammed al Nosairi in one article and Abd al Rhaman al Nosairi in another, and they could be the same person or related but GPC member Tariq al Dhahab is described as leading the al Qaeda forces in both.

More from the Yemen Post:

Armed groups affiliated to Al-Qaeda calling itself as “the Islamic Jihad Group” took over on Saturday night a archaeological town of Rada’a and captured the famous castle of Alamiria and its mosque, local sources affirmed.

Local sources said that armed clashes between the militants and residents are still going, pointing out that the number of casualties are unknown.
Flocks of militants flow to the town, some 150 km southeast of the capital, Sana’a, amid fears of residents who worry of turning their town to a conflict battlefield, added the sources.

Yemeni analysts said Al-Qaeda attempts to expand its control on Yemeni areas, pointing out that the capture on Rada’a will help Al-Qaeda reach other Yemeni strategic areas

Yemeni news reports said local residents led by the tribal leader, Mohmmad Al-Nosairi, are strongly fighting Al-Qaeda militants near the castle of Alamria.
They said that the militants are led by Tariq Al-Dahab, a relative of Anwar Al-Walaki, a Yemeni-American cleric who was killed in a American drone strike last fall.

A Yemeni senior opposition leader of the Yemeni Socialist Party, Yahya Abu Asboa, said Yemen’s security forces did not exert enough efforts to prevent Al-Qaeda militants from entering Rada’a.

He further cautioned against plans of Al-Qaeda to attack the oil-rich city of Marib located close to Sana’a.

Critics of the outgoing Ali Abdullah Saleh accused him of turning a blind eye to the expansion of Al-Qaeda to prove to the global world that his existence is vital to face terrorism and other Jihadi groups inside the state.

They also alleged that he used Al-Qaeda as a card to cling to power, use force against anti-regime porters and have American financial assistances.

Gold accused Sheikh Khalid, his brother, Tariq, who leads the gold jihadist groups affiliated with al Qaeda, the city of white Radaa province, in coordination with the National Security Agency, and with points of high and close to the presidential house in Sana’a, such as control of the city Radaa order declaring an Islamic emirate.

Gold said in a statement to «Marib Press» Tariq Hqih that gold is backed regime of President Ali Abdullah Saleh, said that his brother with the coordinator and former interior minister, Rashad al-Masri disinfectant, and with the National Security Agency.

With denounced the gold entering the jihadist groups to Radaa, under the silence of the camps located in the vicinity of Radaa, said that security forces handed over his brother Tariq gold castle and the city, pointing out that if the cessation of a soldier and a one-stop machine gun rounds fiftieth is able of these groups to take control of the castle and the city.

Gold revealed that his brother met the elements of the national security apparatus, such as control of the Radaa days, and said that he had spoken with his brother and told him that he coordinated with the government.

Mareb Press

I wonder if these are some of the `16 al Qaeda escapees that Saleh was hiding in one of his palaces near Sanaa, as Sadiq al Ahmar told France 24 . Everyday in Yemen is a carbon copy of the last and after a while, its just absurd.

And yet another a jail break:

Al-Qaida free 250 prisoners in Yemen


Hundreds of al-Qaida militants broke into a central jail in Yemen’s southeastern province of al-Bayda on Monday, setting free about 250 prisoners, a provincial security official said, a day after the terrorist group seized the province’s Radda town.

“Hundreds of al-Qaida bearded men wearing security uniform onboard pickup trucks stormed the central prison in Radda this morning, killing several security soldiers and releasing 250 prisoners,” the official told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

The militants also took over all security checkpoints around and inside the city, as well as several government facilities, including the post office and the telecommunications center, the official said, adding that the militants were surrounding the building of the Central Bank of Yemen.

“More militants were still flooding into Radda from nearby provinces of Marib, Abyan, Shabwa, Hadramout, Aden, Lahj and Saada,” said the official.

On Sunday,the militants seized Radda town of al-Bayda province, which borders the restive province of Abyan, a key stronghold of al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).

The AQAP group has seized several cities and towns across the restive southern provinces, as the Yemeni government forces engaged in fierce clashes with militants over past months, leaving hundreds of people killed.


Maybe they are trying to weaken the Houthis by opening another front

Yemen Times: 20 or 80?

SANA’A, Jan. 15 — At least 80 militants believed to be from Al-Qaeda entered Rada’, the capital of Al-Baidah, 170 km south-east the capital Sana’a, on Saturday, according to Yahiya Al-Nusairi, head of the governorate’s Architecture Office.

Al-Nusairi told the Yemen Times that they first entered the Al-Ameria Mosque at 3 p.m., and proceeded to perform the afternoon prayer.

“They performed two prayers there and then delivered a lecture. After that, they seized Al-Ameria Castle,” said Al-Nusairi. He added that people cannot stop anyone who wishes to pray in a mosque. He said, however, that he does not “really know how they passed the checkpoints with their weapons and rocket propelled grenades”.

Al-Nusairi continued: “After we asked them not to do any harm to the mosque, nor to break the branch of a single tree, their leader, Tariq Al-Dhahab, promised to comply.”

However, according to the district-based RDA Press website, the militants’ number didn’t exceed 20 and that they left the mosque to stay at an old fort overlooking the district.

The Al-Ameria Mosque and school was built 500 years ago in the Islamic architectural style. Al-Nusairi said that it is currently open only for prayer, but that use of the bathrooms has been suspended because of financial difficulties. People in groups have not prayed together there for 15 years, as it has been under renovation.

Al-Nusairi said that the militants may have been urged on by Islah Party followers from Rada’. Members of the conservative opposition party, he continued, may have pushed the militants to help them open the mosque.

“We do not know what their intention is,” he concluded.

According to Majed Karrod, a reporter from Marib Press, the militants passed through checkpoints and “soldiers might have even greeted them.” He said that Tariq Al-Dhahab was accused a couple of months ago of killing seven government soldiers.

“Al-Dhahab was among the militants who seized Zinjibar, the capital of Abyan governorate, in May. He has a battalion of 400 to 500 warriors,” said Karrod.

HRW: Unlawful Blanket Amnesty Bill Gives License to Kill

Filed under: Parliament, Post Saleh, Presidency, War Crimes, Yemen, statements — by Jane Novak at 6:48 pm on Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Yes it does. The GCC plan was rejected in Yemen since May because it is clearly designed to retain most of the status quo and is the diametric opposite of the public consensus. Its also blatantly illegal and the US has lost its moral authority on human rights and democracy forever in Yemen. Via email:

Yemen: Reject Immunity Law for President Saleh and Aides
Unlawful Blanket Amnesty Bill Gives ‘License to Kill’

(New York, January 10, 2012) – Yemen’s parliament should reject a draft law that would grant amnesty to President Ali Abdullah Saleh and anyone who served with him for crimes committed during his 33-year rule, Human Rights Watch said today. The sweeping measure could result in impunity for serious international crimes such as deadly attacks on anti-government demonstrators in 2011.

“Passing this law would be an affront to thousands of victims of Saleh’s repressive rule, including the relatives of peaceful protesters shot dead last year,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, executive Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. “Yemeni authorities should be locking up those responsible for serious crimes, not rewarding them with a license to kill.”

The draft law, which the parliament is expected to debate as early as January 11, 2012, violates Yemen’s obligations under international law to investigate and prosecute serious international crimes such as torture, war crimes, and crimes against humanity, Human Rights Watch said.

Bowing to international pressure and 10 months of protests against his rule, Saleh agreed in November to cede power under an accord brokered by the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). In exchange, the GCC deal instructed Yemen’s parliament, which the ruling party dominates, to act on an immunity law before Saleh is to step down formally on February 21, 2012.

The granting of immunity would not prevent courts in other countries from prosecuting serious human rights crimes in Yemen under universal jurisdiction laws, Human Rights Watch said. “Even if the Yemeni parliament grants immunity, the law will not hold water abroad,” Whitson said.

An article in the draft law bars its “repeal or appeal” by either lawmakers or the courts. However, article 51 of the constitution of Yemen says citizens have the right of recourse to the courts to protect their rights and lawful interests. Article 153 of the constitution designates the Supreme Court as the highest judicial authority in the land and empowers it to strike down laws that are unconstitutional.

The preamble to the immunity law wrongfully suggests it was drafted to implement United Nations Security Council resolution 2014 of October 21, 2011, Human Rights Watch said. In fact, the Security Council resolution calls on all parties in Yemen to implement a political settlement based on the GCC accord – rather than adopt the accord itself – and also emphasizes that “all those responsible for violence, human rights violations and abuses should be held accountable.”

International law rejects impunity for serious crimes, such as genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity, and torture. International treaties, including the UN Convention against Torture and the 1949 Geneva Conventions, require parties to ensure alleged perpetrators of serious crimes are prosecuted. As recently as January 6, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay reasserted that amnesty cannot be granted for serious crimes under international law.

Human Rights Watch has confirmed the deaths of 270 protesters and bystanders during attacks by government security forces and gangs on largely peaceful demonstrations against Saleh’s rule in 2011, most in the capital, Sanaa. Dozens more civilians were killed last year in apparently indiscriminate attacks by security forces on densely populated areas during clashes with armed opposition fighters. Human Rights Watch also has documented a broad pattern of international human rights violations and laws-of-war violations by government security forces in previous years, including apparent indiscriminate shelling in the 2004-2010 civil war against northern Huthi rebels and the use of unnecessary and lethal force since 2007 to quash a separatist movement in the south.

“From north to south to central Sanaa, the Saleh government has violated the basic rights of the Yemeni people,” Whitson said. “Without accountability for these crimes, there can be no genuine break from the past in a post-Saleh Yemen.”

For More Human Rights Watch Reporting on Yemen, please visit:

Related from from al Sahwa: Republican Guard kills four civilians in rural area Forces of the Republican Guard headed by Ahmed Ali Abdullah Saleh, son of the outgoing Yemeni president bombarded on Tuesday some villages of Bani Dihrah, killing four civilians including child.

For its part, Hood Organization for Human Rights and Freedoms affirmed that it received on Tuesday the corpses of the four killed civilians.

Hood said that forces of the Republican Guard rejected to allow human rights organizations to take the bodies of five civilians whow were killed five months ago.

On Sunday , the Republican Guards bombarded villages of Bani Jarmooz and Bait Dihrah, using mortars and machine guns against civilians wounding several and damaging many properties.


Filed under: Yemen, photos/gifs — by Jane Novak at 11:22 pm on Monday, January 9, 2012

Change Square: Sana’a, Yemen. In silent remembrance of the hundreds of lives lost in the youth’s peaceful uprising against the Saleh regime. Friends and loved ones left behind continue their fight for freedom, justice and equality.

Join us at:

Follow us on Twitter: #SupportYemen

US State Department pushes for immunity for Saleh and thus al Qaeda in Yemen

Filed under: Donors, UN, GCC, Post Saleh, USA, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 9:47 pm on Monday, January 9, 2012

Obama’s strategic blunder in Yemen may shield Al Qaeda from prosecution

A law passed by Yemen’s cabinet on Sunday provides blanket immunity to former president Ali Abdullah Saleh and all those who served in his governments over the last 33 years. One unintended consequence may be to also immunize those al Qaeda operatives on the payroll of the Yemeni military and security services.

The law grants immunity to Saleh “and whoever worked with him in all the state’s civil, military and security apparatus and organizations during the period of his rule.” The US has pushed for the transition plan since May despite broad public rejection of the immunity clause.

Yemeni military commanders including those now in the opposition are thought be complicit in a range of terror attacks, in addition to a long standing pattern of facilitation of al Qaeda. Many al Qaeda operatives who draw a state salary would then be covered under the immunity deal.

As one example, former Interior Minister Hussain Arab issued an official travel permit to Abdel Rahman al Nashiri in 2000, covering the period of the USS Cole attack that killed 17 US service members. Not only would the law absolve Mr. Arab of any complicity in the al Qaeda attack, it may also absolve Mr. al Nashiri.

If Al Nashiri, who is currently scheduled for trial at Guantanamo Bay, can produce witnesses to the involvement of Yemeni government officials in the attack, the Obama administration will be placed in the uncomfortable position of having lobbied for immunity for the al Qaeda operatives who attacked a US war ship.

Similarly another Yemeni detainee with demonstrated foreknowledge of the 9/11 attack in New York had been employed by the Yemeni Political Security Organization prior to his capture in Egypt.

Yemeni officials have openly admitted to paying al Qaeda operatives’ salaries, purportedly as informants or to keep them out of trouble. Some of those currently partaking in the al Qaeda occupation of Abyan have been found with identity cards from the National Security.

Yemeni activists have long asserted that the state uses al Qaeda to attack its enemies and threaten the international community.

Al Qaeda targeted and killed several foreign nationals in Yemen since 2007 including aid workers from Germany, Britain and South Korea as well as tourists from Spain, South Korea and Belgium. Yemeni officials have stated that al Qaeda is able to obtain intelligence from the security services as a matter of corruption rather than ideology.

The law, which will be presented for parliament’s approval within coming days, also covers those government officials guilty of massive corruption and embezzlement, the primary cause of Yemen’s staggering illiteracy and malnutrition rates. Members of the presidential family are thought to have deposited millions abroad.

State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland termed the immunity clause useful if it encourages “the strongman to leave the stage.”

Hundreds of protesters have been killed by security forces, many by sniper shots to the head, since protests began in February 2011 demanding regime change. The killings continued unabated even after Saleh signed the power transfer deal in November.

Saleh supporters and security forces have attacked numerous journalists RSF reported since the departure plan was signed. Calling December 2011 “a particularly black month,” Reporters Without Borders firmly condemned the continuing violations and urged the international community to intercede.

Yemeni protesters largely reject the US backed transition plan because of the immunity clause. Protests calling for Saleh’s trial continue in nearly every governorate.

The UN Security Council endorsed the agreement, which was ironed out by UN envoy, Jamal Benomar. However, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, issued a statement last week asserting that the plan is illegal under international law,

“I have been closely following the events in Yemen, particularly the very contentious debate about an amnesty law to be presented to Parliament shortly,” the High Commissioner said.

“International law and the UN policy are clear on the matter: amnesties are not permissible if they prevent the prosecution of individuals who may be criminally responsible for international crimes including war crimes, crimes against humanity, genocide, and gross violations of human rights.”

Probable war crimes committed during the Saada war (2005-2010) include the “Scorched Earth” campaign during the sixth round of war, 2009-201o, when the Yemeni air force repeatedly bombed civilian villages, refugee camps, and infrastructure. Saudi air support was responsible for bombing a Yemeni hospital, which Saudi authorities called “a mistake” in conversations to US officials, according to a Wikileaks document. The deliberate denial of humanitarian aid and a pattern of mass nationwide arrests are also thought to have contravened international law.

Another pattern of systematic abuse with regard to southern protesters since 2007 is well documented.

The transition plan although forwarded by the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) is the brain child of President Obama’s counter-terror adviser, John Brennan and US ambassador to Yemen, Gerald Feierstein.

The Wall Street Journal revealed last week that Mr. Brennan was “pissed” when it became apparent that President Saleh had orchestrated a hit on a political rival via US drone by feeding the US false intelligence.

The US drone strike in May 2010 killed the deputy governor of Marib , Jabir Shabwani. Observers questioned Mr. Brennan’s gullibility considering Saleh’s long and extensive history of duping the US on counter-terror issues.

Yemenis have held several protests calling for the expulsion of US Ambassador Feierstein after he disparaged a peaceful 170 mile march from Taiz to Sana’a, held to underscore public rejection of the amnesty deal.

Ambassador Feierstein said the marchers were trying to provoke chaos and thus not inherently peaceful. When state forces killed 11 marchers later in the day, Yemenis charged that the US had given the Saleh regime the green light to murder as well as provided the amnesty afterward.

Over several months, US diplomats have pushed hard for the immunity deal as a way to ease Saleh out of office; however Saleh has outplayed the US at every turn during the 11 month popular uprising. He shows no real intention of giving up power and continues to operate on the political scene through proxies within the unity government.

- Jane

Not to mention that they really have to give immunity to the corrupt opposition now as well or the immunized criminals will have an advantage.

Yemen Observer: The Yemeni cabinet has approved a draft law of amnesty that will give President Ali Abdullah Saleh and his aides immunity from prosecution. (Read on …)

Al Wahishi survives US attack on al Fahdli farm; AQ confirms death of Wahishi nephew

Filed under: Air strike, Counter-terror, Yemen, fahd, obits, personalities — by Jane Novak at 6:42 am on Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Existing of cooperation with military commanders and al-Qaeda in Yemen3/1/2012
Sources affirmed to YemenOnline that the two cities of Abyan province ,Zanzibar and Jaar, still under control of al Qaeda, which is now becoming controlled also on the line that links between Abyan and Shabwa and another between Abyan and Marib, confirming the existence of cooperation with military figures in the Yemeni army and arms dealers are known, as you get them on the weapons of a very sophisticated , and in return provide them with information. (Read on …)

Al Qaeda Occupation of Abyan spurs protest march

Filed under: Abyan, Civil Unrest, Counter-terror, Islamic Imirate, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 5:59 am on Sunday, January 1, 2012

NYR | Yemen Fox | Abyan people stage march to lift Zenjbar blockade – Dignity March
(Read on …)

Yemenis protest US ambassador, demand explusion

Filed under: Protest Fatalities, Taiz, USA, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 2:08 pm on Friday, December 30, 2011

Today, #Yemeni protesters held banners calling for US ambassa... on Twitpic

Today, Yemeni protesters held banners calling for US ambassador to be expelled. Even an apology is no longer enough.

Yemeni protesters calls for US Ambassador’s dismissal

Filed under: Diplomacy, Protest Fatalities, Taiz, USA, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 4:37 pm on Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The CCYRC issued a letter reminding the US President that the Yemeni protesters oppose and are not a signatory to the GCC deal. the group calls for an official apology from the US as they say Ambassador Feierstein uniformly rude, disrespectful and insulting to the Yemeni people and has acted as the Saleh regime’s advocate and protector and with flagerant disregard for democratic principles. In particular the CCYRC condemn Feierstein’s most recent inflammatory statement wherein the Ambassador said the Life March was not a inherently peaceful as it was designed to provoke violence. Within hours, state forces killed 12 marchers.

The ambassador’s statement is below and I was waiting for an English transcript issued by the embassy but there doesn’t appear to be one coming. I find it unbelievable that the US Ambassador would demand political passivity from the Yemeni public. He blamed the peaceful marchers for any violence and chaos that the march triggers, which is akin to calling Dr. Martin Luther King an instigator of chaos and implying that the US civil rights marchers should have stayed home or that Medger Evans was responsible for his own murder because of his activism.

Al-Ariky Al-Mohammed By: توكل كرمان Tawakkol Karman
// translated from Arabic

The U.S. Ambassador in Sana’a is a devil’s advocate and friend of the criminal thugs!!
Online social and news networks lately have been talking about the comments made by the U.S ambassador in Yemen on the violence that accompanied the march of life that came from the city of Taiz on foot which led to the killing of more than thirteen and injuring hundreds. The U.S ambassador said that the march of life « was not peaceful »; He added “the protester had no intention of a peaceful march and they intended to reach Sana’a and cause trouble which would provoke and lead the security forces to respond with violence”. (Read on …)

When Islahis attack (protesters clash in Yemen)

Filed under: Islah, Transition, Yemen, political violence, protests — by Jane Novak at 4:33 pm on Wednesday, December 28, 2011

35 hurt in Yemen protester clashes AFP

SANAA — Clashes between Yemeni youths divided over a power transfer deal that grants President Ali Abdullah Saleh immunity from prosecution left 35 people injured on Tuesday, witnesses and medics said.

“Some 2,000 members of the Islamist Sunni Al-Islah (reform) party, among them dissident soldiers, attacked our camp at dawn, injuring 35 people,” Khalid al-Madani, head of the camp backed by supporters of Shiite Zaidi rebels, told AFP. (Read on …)

Ass’t Al Qaeda AQAP dump

Filed under: Al-Qaeda, Counter-terror, Somalia, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 3:14 pm on Wednesday, December 28, 2011


a href=””> Bar-kulan: An air strike in Yemen’s Ebyen province has killed three Al-Shabaab militants fighting along side Al-Qaeda network, sources say. (Read on …)

Saleh to US

Filed under: Post Saleh, USA, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 12:46 pm on Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Path Is Cleared for Yemeni Leader to Get Care in U.S.

HONOLULU — The Obama administration has decided in principle to allow the embattled president of Yemen, Ali Abdullah Saleh, to enter the United States for medical treatment, subject to certain assurances, two administration officials said Monday.

But those conditions — including a proposed itinerary — have not yet been submitted to the American Embassy in Yemen, these officials said, and no visa has yet been issued to Mr. Saleh.

The decision of whether to admit Yemen’s longtime leader has stirred a vigorous debate within the administration, with some officials fearing sharp criticism for appearing to provide a safe haven for a reviled Arab figure accused of responsibility for the death of hundreds of antigovernment protesters.

The complex negotiations over Mr. Saleh’s visa request attest to the high stakes for the administration, which urgently wants to secure room for political progress in Yemen but does not want to allow Mr. Saleh to use a medical visit as a way to shore up his political position. Nor do they want to play into Mr. Saleh’s penchant for keeping people off kilter.

If allowed to enter, Mr. Saleh would be the first Arab leader to request, and to be granted, an extended stay in the United States since political unrest began convulsing the region a year ago.

One administration official said that there was no further “impediment” to issuing Mr. Saleh a visa, and that he could arrive at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital as soon as the end of this week for additional treatment of medical problems stemming from a near-fatal bomb blast in June at the mosque in his presidential complex.

Though the administration had been concerned that approval would anger the many Yemenis eager to see Mr. Saleh prosecuted for the killing of protesters by his security forces, some believe that giving him a way out of Yemen, even temporarily, could help smooth the way to elections next year and perhaps end a political crisis that has brought the government of the impoverished nation to the brink of collapse.

US ambassador to Yemen justified violence against Life March

Filed under: Taiz, USA, Yemen, protests — by Jane Novak at 12:19 pm on Saturday, December 24, 2011

Wow he’s lost control of his faculties apparently. This makes no sense.

: With the imminent arrival of the life march to its goal of Sanaa, moments before their exposure to lead and tear gas, the U.S. Ambassador Gerald Firestein expresses an explicit position opposed to the march, noting that the international community is waiting for the issuance and activation of the law of immunity under the initiative Gulf.

The American ambassador at a press conference mini-attended three media including “source online” (al masdar) at the US embassy in Sanaa on Saturday that the march of life «is not peaceful,» and added «seem to have the intention not to carry out a peaceful march, but access to Sana’a in order to generate chaos and provoke a violent response by the security ».

He Gerald Firestein this «is not legal .. Thus, the government has the right to maintain law ». And «If people said they want to reach the presidential palace and parliament to Mhasrthma, this is not a legitimate»

The march of life that started from Taiz last Tuesday (Dec. 20) and reached the outskirts of Sana’a this day, has been exposed to the central security forces which launched by the bullets and tear gas, and caused the killing of at least seven people and wounded dozen, as stated by Online source earlier.

The capital, Sana’a during the last few hours is the busiest in the great altar of St. sixty and awaiting the arrival of the march of life, which has received wide coverage by the various means of local and international media.

The ambassador said in response to a question by the source of online in this regard «the peace is not only to not take up arms. if 2000 people decided, for example, to demonstration at the White House, we do not consider it a peaceful and will not allow it». (ed-Liar.! Tens of thousands surrounded White House 11/7/11, the first of thousands of results for large protest at White House.)

The US ambassador said the provocations could lead to further reaction and violence, this does not benefit the country and the new government initiative and the implementation of the Gulf and operational mechanism.

The new improved Yemeni regime attacks the Life March

Filed under: Dhamar, Donors, UN, Ibb, Protest Fatalities, Sana'a, Taiz, War Crimes, protests, reconfigurations — by Jane Novak at 8:38 am on Saturday, December 24, 2011

Thousands of bare foot, bare chested Yemeni youth terrify the barbaric Sana’a regime and the international community with their bleeding feet: Livestream.

The Life March from Taiz was attacked by Central Security forces in Sanaa with live fire and tear gas. Nine wounded marchers were transported to the field hospital in Sana’a Change Square. One fatality has been reported, Abeer AlFaten, murdered for walking. As is standard practice for a decade, security forces are preventing ambulances from reaching the wounded pedestrians. NYR

Meet the new boss, same as the old boss. By re-branding the Sana’a dictatorship and shoving down the citizenry’s throat. the UN, US, EU and SA are publicly treating the entire Yemeni population like petulant children who don’t know what good for them.

The UN SC statement fails to acknowledge, much less take into account, the demand for political empowerment by both the revolutionaries and the southerners. Ironically, while the international community seeks to secure its own goals, these nations are in fact damaging their own mid-term security and national interests, at a time of opportunity, in facilitating the continued imprisonment of a millions determined for freedom.

From my article: The Obama administration’s insistence in retaining elements of the Saleh administration and security forces has thwarted the regime change demanded by millions and allowed al Qaeda to flourish in southern towns. Although US counter-terror efforts have had more latitude to operate since protests began, the Saleh regime and al Qaeda have long had a symbiotic relationship.

Read Noon’s article at Global Voices here: “These GCC states are not at all competent to deal with popular requests for liberty and freedom, not to mention democratic government, because they themselves are mostly despotic regimes,” observed Yemen’s Coordinating Council of the Youth Revolution of Change (CCYRC). “They themselves would never welcome such requests from their own people, let alone be ready to accommodate such demands by people in neighboring states.”

UN Security council press statement on Yemen

Filed under: Donors, UN, Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 4:28 pm on Friday, December 23, 2011

from the UN press office

22 December 2011
On 21 December, the members of the Security Council heard a briefing on the situation in Yemen from the United Nations Special Adviser, Jamal Benomar.
The members of the Security Council welcomed the progress that had been made on implementing the political transition, on the basis of the Gulf Cooperation Council initiative, as well as the implementation mechanism, which is resulting in a peaceful transition of power, as called for in Security Council resolution 2014 (2011). They welcomed the formation of the Government of National Unity.
The members of the Security Council reiterated their call that the Gulf Cooperation Council initiative and implementation mechanism must be implemented in a transparent and timely manner, and in a spirit of inclusion and reconciliation. They noted the Security Council’s support for Yemen in its efforts to reach key milestones in the implementation plan, and expected the parties to continue to honour the timetable set out in the agreement, including the presidential elections on 21 February, the national dialogue, the constitutional review and the programme of reforms to tackle the profound security, humanitarian, and economic challenges that Yemen faces.
The members of the Security Council reaffirmed their commitment to the territorial integrity and unity of Yemen. They urged all the parties to reject violence, refrain from any further provocations and to fully implement Security Council resolution 2014 (2011). The members of the Security Council reiterated that all those responsible for violence, human rights violations and abuses should be held accountable. The members of the Security Council emphasized the need for unimpeded humanitarian access to address the growing crisis. The members of the Security Council also called on all the Yemeni parties to work with the increasing support of the United Nations, international community and the GCC countries, immediately towards achieving peace, stability and reconciliation, as well as alleviating tholitical and humanitarian situation in Yemen and the implementation of Security Council resolution 2014 (2011). They looked forward to further timely updates on the situation, including on the status of the implementation of the political transie humanitarian and economic situation in Yemen.
The members of the Security Council welcomed the efforts of the good offices of the Secretary-General and his Special Adviser, Jamal Benomar. They reaffirmed their intention to continue to actively monitor the security, ption agreements.

Yemen’s Gen Quiran re Taiz violence

Filed under: Aden, Civil Rights, Military, Protest Fatalities, Taiz, War Crimes, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 3:29 pm on Thursday, December 22, 2011

Qiran is also indicted in the murder of Ahmed Darwish in an Aden prison.



TAIZ, Yemen — Armed tribesmen had finally retreated from a pocket of this city, handing back to the state an education building they had occupied in recent weeks. The governor, elated, called it a breakthrough.

Dozens of people had been killed during weeks of violence. Cease-fires had come and gone. Now, the building handover again raised the possibility of a truce. For eight hours, the streets were quiet.

Then the tribesmen retook the building.

“I think we will succeed. Or not,” the governor, Hamoud al-Sofi, said Thursday, sounding exasperated. “We will see.”

Yemen has been caught in a cycle of protest, repression and factional fighting that simply will not let go, even though, as in Taiz, there are many moments that appear to signal a breakthrough, as when the president agreed to step down. The interim government that took power in Yemen last week amid guarded optimism faces an array of daunting challenges. (Read on …)

The Life March in Yemen

Filed under: Civil Unrest, Post Saleh, Sana'a, Taiz, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 9:33 am on Thursday, December 22, 2011

Thousands of Taizians have embarked on a 240 km (170 mile) march from Taiz to Yemen’s capital Sana’a to underscore public rejection of a UN mediated transition plan. The plan devised by the Gulf Cooperation Council (and strong armed into existence by the Obama administration and Saudi Arabia) was overtly and repeatedly rejected by the vast majority in Yemen since its proposal in April.

So far Yemen has a) an appointed unity government including reshuffled, corrupt elites that excludes the pro-democracy youth, b) a presidential election scheduled for 60 days that has already been officially conceded by the opposition political parties, c) an honorary president, the long reigning corrupt tyrant Saleh, in addition to a temporary president and d) immunity for President Saleh and other government officials guilty of murdering and wounding thousands of Yemeni citizens since February as well as looting the government budget and resources for decades. The UN’s endorsement of immunity for mass human rights violations is unprecedented.

The Life March, estimated to take five days, is growing in number as citizens are joining from every town and village along the way. The procession includes a kitchen and medical unit. Women in Dhamar baked 100,000 cookies in preparation for the marchers’ arrival.


Vid updates: marchers arrive in Dhamar, traditionally a Saleh stronghold. And another video with a long shot of the crowd (Link here) :

Saleh and the GPC are threatening to renege for the 7th (8th?) time since April. The GPC accuses the JMP of sabotaging the transition by storming the capital when much of the public’s wrath is directed at the JMP itself. The national uprising in February was triggered in large part by the failure of the political party system in its entirety to function in the public interest. Yemenis say, the JMP is the other face of the regime.

Many more details in my article at

(Read on …)

Photos Arhab,Yemen refugees and destruction following govt bombing

Filed under: Sana'a, Yemen, photos/gifs — by Jane Novak at 9:11 am on Thursday, December 22, 2011

Click Here. Its looking a lot like Saada in the day. The escalating cycle of violence include standard tactics (indiscriminate bombing of residential areas and denial of food) and demonstrate that the Sana’a regime is not a sectarian but rather a politically motivated slaughterer of its own citizens.

Dammaj siege in Saada Yemen: 46 days and counting

Filed under: Dammaj, Sa'ada, Saada War, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 5:10 pm on Wednesday, December 21, 2011

12/21/11 SANAA, Yemen (AP) — Nearly 200 people, among them 15 foreigners, have been killed in clashes over the past few weeks between an ultraconservative Islamist group and former Shiite rebels in northern Yemen, a military official and the leader of the Islamist faction said Wednesday. In Moscow, Russia’s Foreign Minister said four Russian citizens were among those killed. (Read on …)

When is the “New Yemen” going to unblock the internet?

Filed under: Media, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 9:46 am on Sunday, December 18, 2011

Overall assessment: same garbage, new day.

An apt Yemen Times editorial wraps it in a nutshell:

In spite of the fragile and illegitimate parliament we have resurrected, the next phase will be one of ministers and not parliamentarians. This is dangerous, as it means there is no mechanism given to the people by which they can participate in the shaping of their future – outside of political parties, that is.

This also means that the independent youth and any other groups in society have no one to truly represent them and respond to their needs.

The various ministers whose names are bandied about must be able to handle this stage’s demands in practice. Otherwise, Yemen is a lost cause. It may sound scary but the truth is that the fate of Yemen’s development, both today and tomorrow, lies in the hands of the 30 ministers.

Bios of the new cabinet can be found at National Yemen; there’s more info at the Yemen Times.

Its the same faces in new positions without any restructuring of the basic power equation between the governed and government or recognition that the failure of the political party system is what led to the revolution in the first place. The opposition parties were on the sidelines of the revolution, hardly a player until the GCC plan made them one. Meanwhile there’s still a lack of cohesion, strategy, alternative leaders and structures to challenge the perpetuation of the old order and rules of the game which include immunity for Saleh and the continuation of his regime. An internationally approved consensus candidate is scheduled to win the presidential election to be held within two months. Protesters object and protest but do little else.

Storage: The Cabinet breakdown from the Yemen Post:

Ministers nominated by the General People Congress (GPC) and its allies:
Abu Bakr al-Qirbi, Minister of Foreign Affaires;
Yahya al-Shu’aibi, Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research;
Hamoud Ubad, Minister of Endowment and Islamic Affaires;
Amat al-Razzaq Hummad, Minister of Social Affairs and Labor;
Omar al-Kurshumi, Minister of Public Works and Roads;
Awadh Saad al-Socatri, Minister of Fisheries Wealth;
Mohammed Nasir Ahmed, Minister of Defense;
Saleh Hasan Sumai, Minister of Electricity;
Hisham Sharaf, Minister of Oil and Minerals; (Read on …)

Bios new cabinet in Yemen

Filed under: Biographies, Ministries, Transition, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 7:37 pm on Monday, December 12, 2011

By National Yemen

He was born in 1935 in the city of Aden in south Yemen. He finished high school in Aden and then worked as an importer and exporter of dried fish to Sri Lanka. (Read on …)

After UN resolution, 94 killed in Yemen

Filed under: Diplomacy, Donors, UN, Protest Fatalities, Taiz, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 12:22 am on Saturday, November 19, 2011

YT SANA’A, Nov. 16 — Ninety-four Yemenis were killed and over 800 injured since UN Resolution 2014 was issued on October 21, statistics from the SWC, an initiative for the support of women and children, have shown.

According to representatives of opposition-held field hospitals located near Change and Freedom Squares across Yemen, these numbers are preliminary. The amount of missing people and unreported injuries remains unknown.

Taiz has been the scene of a disproportionate amount of deadly violence, with more than fifty deaths in the past three weeks. Also, more than 400 families were displaced as they were forced to leave homes in armed conflict zones.

Tentative reports show that over the last three weeks in Yemen, 124 homes, seven mosques, six public institutions (including one hospital), two community wells, and 17 vehicles were effectively destroyed.

Moreover, the Taiz governorate has been under siege almost without exception throughout the last three weeks, with entry points closed and people not allowed to enter or leave.

A new trend is also reflected in the rising number of female casualties. Last week saw the killing of three women, with an additional seven injured, after the women’s section of a mosque was struck in Taiz.

Compounding the situation, deliberate electricity cuts and water shortages have severely affected the livelihoods of millions of Yemenis.

Fluctuating fuel prices – caused by the manipulation of fuel distribution and the lack of state control – have also disturbed the lives of Yemeni citizens, said the SWC.

UN resolution 2014, which was issued on 21 October, called on President Ali Abdullah Saleh to sign a GCC-backed initiative to transfer power following 10 months of political protests calling for his departure. The UN is set to review the situation on Monday, but to date, Saleh has shown no signs of stepping down.

Naif al Kahtani killed again in Yemen

Filed under: Air strike, Al-Qaeda, Counter-terror, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, obits — by Jane Novak at 12:21 am on Saturday, November 19, 2011

YT: SANAA, Nov. 13 — At least six Al-Qaeda members were killed in an aerial raid on Saturday in Zinjibar, Abyan, a southern governorate and a stronghold of the terrorist group.

Naif Al-Qahtani of Saudi Arabia was named as one of the six killed in the raid by the Yemeni army in the north of Zinjibar.

Three other Al-Qaeda members were killed in an ambush by armed tribesmen allying the Yemeni army in the north east of Al-Taria in Zinjibar.

Official sources claimed that Al-Qaeda members have been coming from the Horn of Africa and east Asia, according to the UPL news website.

Despite the fact that news outlets have been talking about the “seizing of Zinjibar” by Islamists since May, Al-Qaeda experts in Yemen said that state soldiers withdrew on purpose to give militants a chance to settle in the area.

According to an Al-Qaeda expert who preferred not to be named, “the whole Al-Qaeda story has no reality and it is only made up by the government”.

The aerial shelling by the Yemeni government and the US, coupled with the conflict between militants and tribesmen in Zinjibar has caused more than 30,000 citizens to flee their home to live in Aden’s schools and other places.

Other critics accused President Ali Abdullah Saleh of allowing the militants to take over districts in the south such as Zinjibar in Abyan to support the view that without him, Yemen would become a stronghold of Al-Qaeda.

French hostages released

Filed under: Yemen, shabwa — by Jane Novak at 8:20 pm on Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Associated Press

PARIS—Three French aid workers held hostage by al Qaeda militants in Yemen have been freed after nearly six months in captivity, thanks to help from the sultan of Oman and a possible ransom payment, officials said Monday. (Read on …)

Lacking intel, US drones unidentitified groups of suspected terrorists

Filed under: Air strike, Counter-terror, USA, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 8:43 am on Wednesday, November 9, 2011

This article from the Air Force Times deals with the Horn of Africa and uses examples from 2004 but applies to present day Yemen as well.


Despite leading a six-person human intelligence team with responsibility for the Horn of Africa — and with Ethiopia a priority — (Marine Capt. Rye Barcott) Barcott had no idea what the man was talking about…
The conversation ended quickly, but Barcott’s interpreter wasn’t ready to let the matter lie. “Afterwards he’s like, ‘Listen, the Dergue was the communist regime that ran this place. … Everybody knows the Dergue. Come on, these are very basic things.’ ”

The exchange in Gode happened in 2004. The chastened Barcott had run head first into one of the major problems that plagued U.S. operations in the Horn of Africa in the years after 9/11: the lack of a basic understanding of the region among the personnel charged with operating there.

“At that time, DoD had f—- all in terms of HUMINT in the Horn,” said an intelligence source with long experience in the region.

“At a very fundamental level, we simply lacked that baseline that we needed,” said a military targeting official. “We didn’t understand the culture, we didn’t understand the people … in a real sense we didn’t understand the players and how they related in the various organizations inside the various cities in the Horn.” — (Read on …)

Ali Mohsen: I am ready for trial

Filed under: Military, Transition, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 11:20 am on Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Yemen 4 All: General Ali Mohsen: I admit that I personally, and a wide range of military men and politicians, bear great deal of responsibility for mistakes done during the rule of Saleh’s regime.

We are ready to stand before judiciary if we were requested to do so, as witnesses or under the law, and this is a vow from us to the youth of the revolution, to the Yemeni people, and to all those who suffered from the oppression of Saleh’s regime in the southern and the Northern provinces.

Also: #Yemen The pro-revolution army says they captured a car loaded with explosives and related by two phone cards to be blown over the connection call and it was entered to the headquarters of the First Armored Divisions through persons recruited by the National Security Guards for the purpose of the assassination of leaders in the pro- revolution army led by Major General Ali Mohsen.

Aha, full translation:

NYR | : YemenFox | This is the speech delivered by General Ali Mohsen on the occasion of Eid Al-Adha to Yemenis. (Read on …)

SOHR: Human Rights violations in South Yemen, Sept 2011

Filed under: Civil Rights, South Yemen, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 9:23 am on Tuesday, November 8, 2011

The Southern Observatory for Human Rights issued its detailed monthly report on violence and human rights violations in South Yemen, with names, dates and graphic photos of the dead.

SOHR, English, violations in South Yemen Sept 2011

SOHR, Arabic violations in South Yemen, Sept 2011

A closer look at the nature of those violations makes us aware that these violations have exceeded the character of heinousness to be upgraded to the level of crimes against humanity, as they included shooting peaceful demonstrators, killing dozens, wounding hundreds and arresting thousands of them, in addition to the acts of the worst kinds of torture against them….

Soldiers of the regime’s forces on Wednesday evening, September 14, fired on a number of young people in the district of Mansoura, governorate of Aden, when they gathered after an explosion rocked the city. The Web site, “Aden Alghad,” cited the story saying that the shooting caused the young child, Mahd Hassan Mahboob (13 years,) to be (killed) and the child Lutfi Ahadjila (14 years) to be wounded….

The situation in the governorate of Abyan is not a vague mystery,
according to the young person of Zanzibar, but its clear truth is that the regime of President Saleh is behind it, to be under its service, for
information confirms that the constant reinforcements easily and without difficulties arrive to those groups from the northern provinces, including the arms, money and supplies, despite the fact that the entrances and exits of those provinces are under the control of the authorities and the military forces and government.

HOOD documents 1000 disappeared Yemeni activists

Filed under: Civil Society, Civil Unrest, Judicial, War Crimes, Yemen, prisons — by Jane Novak at 8:12 am on Monday, November 7, 2011

The Yemeni Organization for Defending Rights and Freedoms (known as HOOD) launched an investigation into “disappeared” activists. HOOD, a credible organization, found that over 1000 protesters are jailed incommunicado and most likely enduring torture.

While many protesters were grabbed randomly, Yemeni bloggers, tweeters, facebookers and journalists are targeted in particular. Last Friday, millions* across Yemen marched, appealing for solidarity from people in the free world, but gained little western media coverage.

Its also likely some of the missing are dead. After nearly every protest, the state steals the wounded and corpses from hospitals and the streets to reduce the body count. At least three mass graves have been discovered since February.

One family came forward to report the Sanaa regime offered them $10,000 to accuse the opposition in their son’s murder, after he was shot in the eye and killed by the security forces.

Yemen Post: HOOD human rights organization announced that more than 1000 youth activists are still illegally being held by the regime only because they chose to protest peacefully. Among the imprisoned are eight women the organization claims.

Youth leaders in Sana’a marched on Friday raising banners and calling the international community to help in release those imprisoned by government forces and save them from the torture they are going through.

Abdul Rahman Barman, the executive director of HOOD told Yemen Post, “the number of imprisoned youth is on the rise and the world must stand against the government for the sake of humanity.”

“These youth are being tortured and attacked fiercely. Some leave government custody with their minds lost from the torture,” added Barman.

Though the last week of protests in Yemen have been peaceful, security forces have killed more than 900 since January.

Earlier witness testimony detailed brutal torture of prisoners, including children as young as 12, at the hands of Yemeni security forces.

Violence has increased since the UN Security Council passed resolution 2014 two weeks ago strongly urging Saleh to step down. Its par for the course.

During 1994’s civil war, President Ali Abdullah Saleh ignored two security council resolutions calling for the immediate end to the random shelling of Aden City. Saleh’s utter disregard for the resolutions and the forced imposition of unity on south Yemen in 1994 gives rise to southern Yemenis’ claims that they are “occupied” by the northern Saleh regime.

*Yemen has about 25 million citizens. About half are under 15. The marches demanding regime change take place across the nation, not just the capital, and draw the majority of Yemenis to the streets, weekly. Hundreds of thousands of youth activists and others are living in protest squares since February, refusing to go home until Saleh and his regime are deposed.

Federalist southern expatriates undermine calls for independence, exclude residents from talks

Filed under: South Yemen, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 10:27 pm on Friday, November 4, 2011

(10/5) The YT explains the blocks within the southern movement and that the more moderate positions are represented by external actors, but many southerners within Yemen are still firmly committed to independence. I posted a plea after the article to give a sense of the depth of sentiment in the south.

Yemen Times SANA’A, Oct. 5 — The Southern Movement’s recent preparatory meeting in Cairo revealed significant differences among the movement’s ranks in terms of how it imagines the future administrative system of Yemen. The meeting, held on 26 and 27 September, 2011, aimed at preparing for a large-scale conference to be held soon in order to facilitate the creation of a unified southern position in Yemen’s politics. (Read on …)

Yemen bought $95 mil from Serbian arms dealer Tesic in 09

Filed under: Diplomacy, Donors, UN, Economic, Other Countries, Proliferation, Security Forces, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 10:08 pm on Friday, November 4, 2011

Everybody is wondering where the new arms shipment came from; if missiles, I was thinking North Korea; otherwise eastern Europe. Most Yemenis think Saudi Arabia, probably the only country willing to extend credit to the Sanaa regime at the moment. (But then with the earlier infusion of funds from Gadaffi, maybe Saleh can handle COD.)

9/23/11 HRF: Cables released by Wikileaks reveal that Slobodan Tesic, a Serbian arms dealer, contracted in 2009 to sell $95 million worth of sniper rifles, antiaircraft guns, and other arms and ammunition to the Yemen Ministry of Defense. As scores of unarmed protestors continue to be killed by the Yemeni government in renewed violence this week, possibly by these same weapons, Human Rights First renews its call for the United States to actively pressure the networks that enable brutal violence against civilians and grave human rights abuses. (Read on …)

Yemen gov’t aided Gimto detainee al Nashiri before the USS Cole attack, sheltered him after

Filed under: Aden, USA, USS Cole, Yemen, al nashiri, gitmo — by Jane Novak at 9:16 pm on Friday, November 4, 2011

2014 update: this is the correct link for the 2011 CRS report

And other oddities:

The latest news on Gitmo detainee Abd al Rahim al Nashiri, in US custody since 2002, is that the Military Commission can not confirmthat he will be released if found not guilty. Its not in the Military Commission’s jurisdiction to make those kind of pledges. Considering Nashiri was water boarded, its questionable if any of his statements will be allowed at trial, but prosecutors are confident that there is enough other evidence for a conviction.

Al Nashiri is charged with aiding the al Qaeda attack on the USS Cole in Aden port in 2000. The bombing killed 17 US service members and severely wounded dozens more. Al Nashiri selected the targets, the timing and coordinated the operatives. However, unexplored for a decade is the level of complicity by top Yemeni government officials and the failure of US intelligence to get a warning to the ship.

Prior to the attack on the USS Cole, Yemen’s then Interior Minister Hussain Arab issued al Nashiri a travel pass that enabled him to pass Yemen’s many internal checkpoints without search or question in the months preceding the terror attack. Al Nashiri also had a weapons permit issued by the Interior Ministry. These official documents were presented in Yemeni court during the 2005 trials of other conspirators.

In an interesting coincidence, Yemeni President Saleh ordered several top officials, including Interior Minister Arab, to travel from the capital Sana’a to Aden the night before the USS Cole was bombed there.

Saleh denied that Yemen was notified of the impending arrival of the warship. According to Centcom commander, General Zinni, in Congressional testimony, US naval officials followed the standard procedures for refueling including a two week advance notification to the host port.

It was also around two weeks prior to the attack that the military data mining group Able Danger and separately DOD analyst Kie Fallis picked up intel streams about an impending attack. Both made several attempts to obtain authorization to issue official warnings to no avail.

Kie Fallis quit the day of the Cole bombing. Able Danger’s Anthony Shaffer’s information never made it into the 9/11 report, although he tried. DOD later revoked Shaffer’s health insurance and forced him out over a “stolen” pen that he reported taking as a souvenir as a teen.

The NSA had the “Yemen hub” (a phone line in Yemen used by al Qaeda operatives for calls to and from bin Laden and others) under heavy surveillance for over a year prior to the Cole bombing, and for about a year after. There was a satellite trained on the house in Sanaa 24/7. Oddly, the NSA never learned of or reported on the USS Cole plot.

The CIA withheld information from the FBI about an al Qaeda summit, a high level meeting in Malaysia in January 2000, at which both the Cole and 9/11 were discussed. (See former federal investigator Ali Soufan’s excellent book, The Black Banners for more.)

Yemeni officials failed to cooperate with Soufan and other FBI agents in Yemen investigating the bombing. Some like the head of Yemen’s Political Security Organization in Aden, Hussain al Ansi, engaged in active misdirection and stonewalling.

Ten terrorists awaiting trial for the Cole attack escaped Yemeni prison in 2002 and after surrendering, their trials resulted in sentences of five to ten years. Most of escaped prison again in 2006. By 2008, all those convicted in the attack had their sentences commuted and were free. Al Nashiri, in US custody, was sentenced to death in Yemen in absencia in 2005.

The Jurist reports the Yemeni government sheltered (and lied for) al Nashiri after the bombing. The Congressional Research Service details the Cole bombers’ releases and notes that, according to the Washington Post, Al Nashiri had spent several months before his capture under “high-level protection” by the Yemeni government.

After the USS Cole attack, Interior Minister Arab was transferred, appointed by Yemeni President Saleh to the Shura Council. Arab resigned and joined the Pro-Revolutionary Military Council in March 2011.

Previous: (2007) The USS Cole Bombing in Yemen: What We Know Today

Related: Defense argues US was not at war in 2000, thus the Military Commission does not have jurisdiction.

Journos singled out for death in Yemen

Filed under: Media, Protest Fatalities, Targeting, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 6:50 pm on Friday, November 4, 2011

Four Yemeni journalists were killed since Saleh’s return in September.

10/25: He was speaking to the International Press Institute’s Naomi Hunt by Skype, which was something of a feat because Skype has been jammed from Yemen since February.

It is just one of the ways in which the regime of President Ali Abdullah Saleh is inhibiting media coverage in his country. (Read on …)

Yemen denies Syrian pilots killed were tasked with attacking protesters

Filed under: Lahj, Protest Fatalities, Syria, War Crimes, Yemen, political violence — by Jane Novak at 6:45 pm on Friday, November 4, 2011

Catching up, only 18 more drafts to publish or delete. I’m leaning toward delete, maybe backdate. This is just too absurd to pass up though. A Yemeni fighter jet crashed at the al Anad AF base in Lahj and seven passengers killed were Syrian pilots.

The regime’s denial that they were brought in to attack the protests is total blather; its more likely that one of the leaders in the Syrian Baath Party like, lets say errrr, Adbel Hafidh Kaid Noaman, hooked up the Syrian pilots for Saleh. UPdate al Masdar publishes the names of the dead and injured Syrian pilots.

Yemen denies opposition claims on the military aircraft crash 27/10/2011 Yemen Online: A military source has revealed the aircraft that crashed in Lahj province south of Yemen two days ago was carrying a number of Syrian and Yemeni trainers. The crash occurred during the landing in Al-Anad air base, as a result of a technical fault and an incorrect navigational measurement by the pilot. The landing took place over an area adjacent to the base runway.

The military source said that the accident had led to the killing of eight Syrian trainers and one Yemeni passenger. Seven other Yemenis escaped unscathed from the accident, including the pilot, Colonel Mahmud Yahya Muhammad al-Armazah, along with two Syrians.

The Syrian killed in the accident work as professional aviation trainers at the Faculty of Aviation and Air Defense. They have been providing fundamental aviation training for 11 years’ the military source stressed

The military source notes that the Yemeni armed forces do not need to seek the assistance of any foreign fighter pilots, as the media run by the Joint Meeting Parties (Opposition) claimed.

Tensions Houthis/Dammaj students in Saada, Yemen (Updated)

Filed under: Dammaj, Religious, Sa'ada, Yemen, abu jubarah, al Jawf — by Jane Novak at 6:24 pm on Friday, November 4, 2011

Update 3: vid

Update 2: More from the Yemen Post:

One Salafi student was killed in clashes between the Shia Houthi Movement and the extreme Sunni Salafi movement in the northern Yemen Sa’ada province.

The escalations between both groups started when Houthis claimed that Salafis are entering weapons inside their educational institutions in the town of Dammaj, and demanded that all military posts are emptied.
(Read on …)

Free homicide through global decisions

Filed under: Yemen, guest posts — by Jane Novak at 3:15 pm on Friday, November 4, 2011

Free homicide through global decisions

written by
Amr Mohammed Al Raishi

Since the beginning of the Arab spring revolutions, different visions of political powers are found in the international community; toward every revolution is a different reaction from the other, according to criteria of interests that will result from this revolution or not.Theoretical and practically it is well known in the political world, what are the roots of the political double standards?

Have been seen strong international support to the revolutionaries in Libya, also international political support for the revolutionaries in Egypt, Syria and Tunisia also, Yemenis had eagerly awaited to see a Security Council resolution that would be be a real step to remove the cover of international legitimacy from SALEH as president.

Actually, Security Council resolution provoked outrage in Yemen for many main reasons .Regrettably, the Security Council resolution did not confess Yemeni revolution plus It was not compulsory for SALEH to step down. All that was so extremely clear through terms of resolution. Security Council resolution had portrayed a current situation in Yemen as a “Political Crisis,” not a popular revolution & this is shown visibly by the Security Council resolution statement which states: “and calls on all parties to refrain immediately from using violence to achieve political goals.”.

Resolution was not fair as it equated the executioner and the victim.

Yemenis after spending more than nine months of violence and struggle against the SALEH regime who caused the killing of civilians & peaceful demonstrators, plus using excessive force against innocent people even women & child ,just to intimidate Yemenis and create chaos inside Yemen , to put Yemenis revolution under blame and placed it under suspicion and conspiracy theories from Yemen` enemy, and that resulting instability on the social peace in Yemen .

These dirty tactics, unfortunately, succeeded increasing some sort of lack of clarity in the international community. Using (Al Qaeda) terrorism, give permission to central security & republic guard forces kill innocent people in civilian clothing to mislead world who is the real murderer? Therefore and it will Be based on the vision like as a conflict between opposition and supporters of the governor.

Resolution let Yemenis feel unsatisfactory & disappointing after their sacrifices and aspirations to achieve dignity and freedom to them self. Frankly Security Council resolution is toothless along with variation in the terms of the resolution, If we focus al little bit when Security Council resolution says:
(Read on …)

Yemen’s revolutionaries letter to the world

Filed under: photos/gifs — by Jane Novak at 7:29 am on Friday, November 4, 2011

One million hand prints for a civil state: Red is for the people murdered and blue is for peace. (Link here.)


Filed under: al-Khaiwani, photos/gifs — by Jane Novak at 7:27 am on Friday, November 4, 2011

Whenever I am considering retiring, some one beats up* al Khaiwani


and just pisses me off all over again.

Update, ripped shamelessly from Howie:

(Read on …)

Fox News only reports al Qaeda activity in Yemen while millions march in child’s funeral

Filed under: 3 security, Media, Protest Fatalities, Sana'a, USA, Yemen, attacks, protests — by Jane Novak at 11:52 am on Thursday, November 3, 2011

The western media black-out continues:

Clearly for FOX News, news worthiness depends on who is doing the killing; one person killed by al Qaeda vastly outweighs the hundred killed by the Yemeni government in the last week. For a day, CNN ran the headline: Yemeni women burn veils, wow, interesting, at least they mentioned “Yemen,” as the state was simultaneously pounding residences in Taiz with artillery and shelling villages in Arhab with missiles.

And neither one can find for five seconds for this from today, (if its not working try this direct link.)

Fox News: Car Bomb Kills Anti-Terror Chief in South Yemen.


- Airstrikes on Arhab leave 120 civilians killed, 340 wounded

- Nationwide slaughter since UN SC council resolution 2014

- One million demand regime change

- Yemen Post: Several Million of Yemeni gathered nationwide in the streets of Yemen yesterday, demanding the fall of the regime and Ali Abdullah Saleh’s trial as they say the president is continuing to murder his people.

Protesters had spell out “butcher” across their chest in red ink in denunciation of president Saleh’s many crimes. “He’s using snipers to gun down women and children, Sana’a and Taiz are under shelling attacks everyday…Saleh is killing Yemeni and the World stands silent…We will not,” said Mohamed Hassan Said a defected officer.

In Sana’a, the capital, a funeral march was organized to bury the bodies of the victims of the revolution amongst whom was 4 year-old little Waffa. While carrying the coffins the crowd was chorusing anti-regime slogan, asking the international community to bear witness of the crimes committed against peaceful Yemeni people. (Read on …)

Yemeni opposition leader mowed down in “accident”

Filed under: PFU, Sana'a, Targeting, Yemen's Lies, political violence, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 11:48 am on Thursday, November 3, 2011

Targeted assassination attempts continue:

Yemen Post: Senior Opposition Leader still in Bad Condition; Youth Blaming Government for Incident

Defected military loyal to the opposition warned on Monday that its leaders will be targets of government assassination plots.

One day after the warning, Mohammed al-Mutawakil, the secretary general of the opposition popular front (ed-PFU) party was injured in a traffic accident the opposition call as planned by the government in an effort to kill him.

He was hit by a motorcycle as he was walking down the street. Al-Mutawakil received serious injuries to the head and is now hospitalized.

Hundreds of youth and opposition leaders visited al-Mutawakil and were not happy.

“We are sure this is not an accident. His health is really bad. This is planned and he was one of the respected leaders in the eyes of the pro revolution youth,” said Abdullah Najjar, a youth activist who visited al-Mutawakil

Majority of Yemen opposition leaders have left the country knowing that Yemen is not safe for them anymore. The interior ministry denied that the incident was planned and is investigating with the motorcycle driver.

Saleh has a trail of blood behind him dating back decades. The car accident is among the most repetitive tactics. There are no moral restraints on the regime; its no surprise that the opposition is making this accusation. Its possibly true. The 1999 death of the great Yemeni activist and editor, Abdulazziz al Saqqaf is one event that generates national suspicion. Leaving a lunch with Abdubakr al Qirby (a medical doctor), Professor al Saqqaf was run over and killed by a car in a sequence that made no sense as an accident. Al Qirby later became and remains Yemen’s Foreign Minister. New information came to light in the last months about Saleh’s complicity in the death of at least one former president, prior to attaining the presidency himself. The treachery of Saleh has no bounds.

Update: The motorcycle was driven by children according to buzz. The PFU rejects the Interior Ministry’s announcements issued without conducting an investigation.

Update 2: al Mutawakil transferred to Saudi Arabia for treatement.

The un-mentionableness of Ali Mohsen

Filed under: Islah, Media, Military, Post Saleh, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 11:32 am on Thursday, November 3, 2011

Islah’s repression of independent thought and revolutionaries continues:

Yemen Post: Islah profile: As revolutionaries in Yemen are celebrating their victory in eventually obtaining some worldwide attention, and relishing in the fact that western nations have taken up the matter of Saleh’s presidency to the UN Security Council, the main opposition party, al-Islah is slowly but surely high jacking the revolution, rallying to its cause more and more protesters. (Read on …)

Sanaa regime steals corpse, offers victim’s family 2m/YR to accuse opposition

Filed under: Protest Fatalities, Sana'a, Security Forces, Yemen, Yemen's Lies — by Jane Novak at 11:20 am on Thursday, November 3, 2011

The propaganda continues:

News Yemen

The official media said he was killed at the hands of the protesters

Family of the martyr Jaradi: we were able to extract his body from the Republican and mediated by the government offered us 2 million riyals 29/10/2011

Said the old family of the martyr Mohammad Jaradi The government offered 2 million riyals for the funeral of their parents in their backs on the seventy-screen TV to accuse the band of Yemen murder.

And subjected to gunshot Jaradi in the eye during the suppression by the security forces (Read on …)

More AQAP fighters arrive in Abyan

Filed under: Abyan, Islamic Imirate, TI: External, Yemen, other jihaddists, pirates — by Jane Novak at 11:14 am on Thursday, November 3, 2011

The AQAP CF in Abyan continues:

Yemenat: New enhancements to the supporters of al-Qaeda in Abyan

According to local sources in the city of Jaar, in Abyan province, south of Yemen, the city witnessed the arrival of new fighters and additional military reinforcements to support the armed groups that are believed to belong to al Qaeda.

The sources pointed out that the military buildup, which includes a large number of fighters who are nationals of various Asian, African and combat equipment, and arrived to the province of Abyan by sea in the coastal city of Shakra, which is still controlled by armed elements in their hands since the fall several months ago. (Read on …)

Yemen’s elite capture of economy

Filed under: Corruption, Crime, Economic, Yemen, Yemen-Statistics — by Jane Novak at 11:09 am on Thursday, November 3, 2011

The pillaging of the economy continues:

From Chatham House, the full ( PDF report is here):
The recent political crisis in Yemen has created a cycle of hyperinflation, currency depreciation and disruption to the supply of basic goods. This is already having a serious impact on the 10.3 million Yemenis living in poverty, with the prospect of worse conditions to come.

Yemen’s economy is in thrall to a complex, intertwined network of elites that control the oil industry, imports, processing, and packaging and distribution of goods. Many members of these elite groups are key actors in the current crisis. (Read on …)

Taiz, Yemen shelled; five dead

Filed under: Protest Fatalities, Sana'a, Taiz, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 11:06 am on Thursday, November 3, 2011

The deaths continue:

Yemen Post In the early hours of Wednesday morning, the government troops resumed their shelling campaign in Taiz, one of the flashpoint of the revolution, while in the same time using its ground troops and armed thugs to assaults districts under the control of the independent army of the revolution.

Government forces killed at least five people and eight others injured.
The government attacks have been nonstop for hours. The death toll is expected to rise as a number of the injured are in critical condition. (Read on …)

EU: Yemen’s Saleh agrees (again) to step down

Filed under: Diplomacy, Donors, UN, Post Saleh, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 11:05 am on Thursday, November 3, 2011

The game continues:

Reuters- Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh has moved a step closer to handing power to his deputy by accepting a U.N. formula to ease a transition and end an uprising against his rule, the EU envoy to Yemen was quoted by the state news agency Saba as saying. (Read on …)

Saudi Crown Prince Nayef: anti al Qaeda, pro-Wahabbi

Filed under: Saudi Arabia, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 11:03 am on Thursday, November 3, 2011

Following the death of Saudi Crown Prince Sultan on Oct 22, King Abdullah appointed Prince Nayef bin Abdul Aziz Al-Saud, Interior Minister since 1975, as Crown Prince and next in line to the throne.

Prince Nayef is best known in the US for spearheading the crackdown on al Qaeda that drove many terrorists to find refuge in Yemen. The ramped up Saudi CT posture after 2003 included mass arrests (including torture and detention without trial, a multi-pronged jihaddi rehabilitation program, and increased security measures including a border fence with Yemen. A media campaign designed to shame al Qaeda included televised condemnations from the terrorists’ families that increased social pressure.

Nayef’s successes against AQ prompted Yemen’s AQAP to target him for assassination during a feigned surrender in Aug 09. Nayef suffered only light injuries from a PETN bomb designed by Ibrahim al Asiri (still at large in Yemen), whose brother was the suicide bomber.

Nayef is also known as a “conservative,” and in Saudi Arabia that means thwarting popular efforts toward civil rights and governmental accountability. Nayef is a strong supporter of the supremacist, takfiri Wahabbi doctrine and infrastructure. Domestically he undercut efforts at incremental reforms, including women driving or voting, as well as the continued repression of Saudi Shia’s demands for equal rights.

Nayef served as the de facto head of Saudi Arabia when both the King and Prince Sultan faced medical issues over the last years. Nayef signed off on the deployment of the Saudi military to Bahrain to augment the violent crack down on Bahrain’s Arab Spring (and its Shia majority.)

In Yemen, Saudi Arabia overtly committed substantial war crimes during the Saada War, which was fought near the Yemen/Saudi border. The kingdom provided billions of dollars to President Saleh, and Saudi fighter jets conducted months of air strikes in Yemen, aimed at the annihilation of the Shia Houthi rebels.

These well documented of Saudi violations of international law include indiscriminately bombing villages and civilian infrastructure, denying border passage for humanitarian aid and returning Yemeni refugees to the war zone (refouling). Wikileaks cables reveals that the Saudis were well aware that Saudi airstrikes in Yemen caused substantial civilian fatalities, and successfully leveraged the bombing of a Yemeni hospital and other mistakes to obtain satellite imagery from the US. The Saudi’s aggressive posture toward the Houthis was largely fueled by fear of its own repressed Shia minority.

Earlier this year, Nayef and his son assumed control over Saudi Arabia’s patronage network in Yemen, through which the kingdom distributes billions in direct payments to Yemeni Sheikhs, clerics and politicians as well as Wahabbi institutes and organizations.

TFE: Saudi Arabian King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz Al-Saud has appointed Interior Minister Prince Nayef bin Abdul Aziz Al-Saud as the new crown prince, the Royal Court said in a statement issued last Friday, signaling an orderly process of future succession in the world’s largest oil exporter.

The selection of 78-year-old Prince Nayef to succeed Prince Sultan as the new crown prince of Saudi Arabia ushers in the beginning of what promises to be a season of big changes at the top of the royal family and cabinet, all set in the midst of the Arab awakening. Newly appointed Crown Prince Nayef bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud has been minister of the interior since 1975…

Earlier this year Nayef publicly admonished a member of the mainly consultative Shura Council who had called for a review of the ban on women driving.

“This means less for Saudi Arabia’s external relations than it does internally because a lot of people there, especially women, are apprehensive that Nayef will close back down some of the space that Abdullah has opened up around individual citizens,” said Thomas Lippman, a Saudi Arabia specialist at the Middle East Institute in Washington…

Nayef has strong support among Saudi Arabia’s Wahhabi clerics. But he is said to have little sympathy for political Islamist groups, like the Muslim Brotherhood, which he views as a threat to the ruling family’s grip on power…In the run-up to Saudi Arabia’s 2005 municipal elections, it was Nayef who decided that women should not be allowed to vote. Scholars say he may pursue policies that expand his base of support within security services and Islamist groups.

The tragic death of Yemen expert Chris Boucek

Filed under: A-analysis, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 10:45 am on Thursday, November 3, 2011

Yemen analyst Chris Boucek of the Carnegie Endowment died yesterday in the US after returning from one of his many trips to Yemen. A top Middle East and Yemen expert who often testified before Congress, he wrote groundbreaking reports on the multiple crises and dysfunctions in Yemen. A cool headed analyst of enormous insight, Mr Boucek performed a great service to Yemen and the world, and his life’s work will have a lasting impact. It is a great loss for his family, friends, Yemenis and us all.

Dear Friend,

I write to share the sad and shocking news that our colleague and friend Chris Boucek died suddenly this morning at home. He had been in apparently good health, and enormously busy and productive right up until today.

Chris joined the Carnegie Endowment’s Middle East program near the outset of his career. He not only met but far exceeded our expectations. As those of you who know his work appreciate, he made a big impact in many communities in the Middle East and in the United States. In a very short time, he built up a unique body of expertise on Islamic extremism in the Arabian Peninsula and the Sahel. He had recently returned from Yemen, full of thoughtful analysis on where the region was heading. From academia to the military, his insights and advice were in wide demand. He was also a sparklingly nice human being, of quiet warmth and humor who leaves a very big hole behind. We will miss him deeply: he was an admired colleague and a great friend.

In Sadness,

Jessica Mathews
Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

AQAP denies Ibrahim al Banna dead etc

Filed under: Al-Qaeda, Yemen, obits — by Jane Novak at 5:31 pm on Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Assorted AQAP links. I’m so sick of these fanatics:

(Read on …)

Sanaa airport shut

Filed under: A-INFRASTRUCTURE, Sana'a, Security Forces, Transportation, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 6:11 pm on Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The Arhab thing takes a twist…

Damage not caused by shelling, four jets damaged and possible inside job, airport receiving.


Another military official, who also requested anonymity, said the blast on Sunday night inside the military base could be a signal of division in the air force led by Mohammed Saleh Al Ahmar, the half brother of President Ali Abdullah Saleh. (Read on …)

Yemeni tanks shell apartment building in Taiz, thugs kidnap corpse in Sanaa

Filed under: Protest Fatalities, Sana'a, Taiz, War Crimes, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 9:59 am on Tuesday, October 25, 2011

yeah yeah Im not supposed to be here but anyway:

Taiz, tanks have been shelling residential areas for some time:

Qaa, Sanaa, another repetitive tactic, stealing the dead: NYR: “Saleh’s thugs drag a killed protester in a barbaric way and kidnap his body in todays attack on the peaceful march in Qaa”

Yemen shoots, bombs protesters in Taiz City, Sanaa

Filed under: Protest Fatalities, Taiz — by Jane Novak at 9:43 am on Tuesday, October 25, 2011

As long as I’m logged on, which wont be for long: State violence and collective punishment is ongoing and spiked in Sana’a City, Taiz (8 killed), Hodeidah ( six wounded), Arhab, suburban Sana’a, ( (7 dead) and other governorates in Yemen since UN SC res 2014, Saleh is spewing new/same old BS like a ceasefire, as child health indicators are way down and “Yemen is on the verge of a true, deep humanitarian disaster,” Geert Cappelaere, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) representative in Yemen, told journalists in Geneva on 24 October.

CNN: At least 10 people were killed and dozens injured Tuesday in clashes between Yemeni government security forces in the country’s capital and the province of Taiz, medical officials reported.

Two died when security forces opened fire on thousands of anti-government protesters in Sanaa, the medical officials said.

Dr. Mohammed Al-Qubati, a medic at a field hospital there, said “security forces were shooting at protesters immediately after the protests started in Sanaa.” Eleven of the injured were in critical condition, he added.
(Read on …)

The (Yemeni Nobel Winner) Tawakkol Karman controversy

Filed under: Civil Society, Islah, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 8:46 am on Tuesday, October 25, 2011

My article on the Tawakkol/Nobel/ Muslim Brotherhood controversy is here, click. It says Islah founder al Zindani openly advocates jihadist violence, but he’s Saleh’s buddy, not Tawakkol’s. Furthermore the protesters reject the ineffectual opposition parties entirely and advocate a parliamentary system that will reinforce political diversity and empower small parties, minorities and independents. (The US backed GCC plan will empower the radicals, Islah and the status quo; one reason the protesters reject it entirely.)

This is a current interview and video of Tawakkol at Democracy Now and her statement with Ban Ki Moon is here

I am astonished that so many conservative commentators jumping in with both feet, meme of the day. Two of the most informed and rational are linked in my article, but there’s a dozen others going off who never covered the blood bath in Yemen or Saleh’s relationship with AQAP and are now obsessed with trashing Tawakkol as a radical solely because she belongs to the Islah party. Then logically all the Democrats should resign their party because of Bill Ayers (among other reasons).

Some analysis is based on Wikipedia depth understanding of Yemen. One theme was, Why doesn’t she join/create another party? Its Yemen. Tawakkol couldn’t get a license to text message news or establish a news paper for two years. No non-Saleh loyalist can create a new party. When I say the JMP is “diverse,” I mean Islamist oriented Islah joined with the secular YSP, socialist remnants of the ruling party of the former southern state, the PDRY, to form the JMP. The reason Islah itself is diverse is that the southerners’ YSP is the only other opposition party that has any seats in Parliament, due to the hegemony of the ruling GPC. Options to oppose Saleh from within the political system are limited to Islah or the socialists, and both have long been compromised and not fully within the opposition.

But overall, how Tawakkol feels about homosexuals (now that we know what she thinks about Jews) is much less relevant than the fact that Saleh is inserting National Security operatives (and paying al Qaeda) to create chaos in Abyan and the fact that he regularly releases AQAP operatives in a quid pro quo arrangement. Saleh asked for and got a fatwa against protesting. He plays the religion card internally and the terrorism card externally. The threat to US national security is not Tawakkol Karman.

Defector Ali Mohsen is very well deserving of scrutiny in this regard, as are US sweethearts, Saleh’s relatives, security force commanders and CT partners, the Four Thugs. Tawakkol Karman is a democracy activist representative of thousands of other democracy ideologues in Yemen. The backlash against her is more about the politicized Nobel Committee.

Updates: Rusty gets it, see The Arab World, It ain’t Switzerland

The same principle holds in Yemen where a woman with ties to Islamists won the Nobel Peace prize. I don’t give the Nobel Prize much credence as anything more than what Norwegian politicians think, but the reaction about Tawakkol Karman sharing in the prize has been, well, kinda stupid.

This isn’t the choice between a pro-American dictator and Lockean liberals, it’s the choice between a Pakistani like “ally” which pays lip service to the GWOT but who had deep ties to al Qaeda and Saudi style Islamists and those that oppose him. That the opposition is made up of other Islamists is just part of the game you play in the Arab world. It’s also made up of socialists, Baathists, and whatever other insane and discredited ideology still lingering in the region.

Yes, exactly, there are actually Nasserites. All the parties are left over from before 1990’s unity and have a stale ideologies. They don’t really function as parties in that they are top down organizations that don’t ask their members for input or have real transitions of power or transparency themselves.

There are plans in work for a democratic party, but Saleh has to go before it can be founded.

Below is a write up from MEMRI that notes Tawakkol is of a liberal mindset. The MEMRI article says she renounced her Islah membership in favor of the democratic demands of the revolution. Like my article, it highlights her activism in favor of journalists, villagers and women’s rights. It also says that she advocates safeguarding against extremists stealing the revolution by advancing a pluralist model of a transitional government.

There’s a couple of good citations including, “Her preference of liberal over Islamist views was also reflected in her call, during an interview, for equality between Muslim Yemenis and religious minorities such as the Jews, which would include the right to run for president.[13]”

“During the protests against President Saleh, Karman stood out as an independent leader representing no partisan position. Thus, for example, she refused to negotiate with the regime, though her party did negotiate with it.”

There are a few minor factual errors in the MEMRI article including, Tawakkol is not a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, whether or not they claim her. She is not and never was a member of Parliament. (She was elected to the ruling council of Islah because she is so popular, to the dismay of the hard liners in the party.) The name of her NGO, Women Journalists without Borders was stolen by a regime clone in 2006, the correct name for her NGO is Women Journalists without Chains.

Tawakkul Karman, one of the three women awarded the Nobel Peace Prize this year, is a leader of the Yemeni protest movement who advocates nonviolent struggle for regime change in her country. A 32-year-old mother of three, she was born to a rural family in Taiz province. Her father, ‘Abd Al-Salam Khaled Karman, is a politician and lawyer, and her sister, Safa Karman, is a news editor for Al-Jazeera TV.[1]
After the family moved to San’a, she earned a bachelor’s degree in commerce from the University of Science and Technology there, followed by a master’s in political science and a certificate in general education from Sana’a University. She also studied investigative journalism in the U.S.

Karman is active in trade unions, human rights organizations and media institutions in Yemen and outside it. She is a member of the Yemeni parliament on behalf of the Muslim Brotherhood party, Al-Islah, and of the Youth Revolution Council. She is also the chair of Journalists without Borders in Yemen, and a prominent advocate of free press, women’s rights and human rights in her country. (Read on …)

US demands immediate transfer of power in Yemen

Filed under: Post Saleh, USA, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 8:32 am on Saturday, October 22, 2011

Everyone seems to forget Saleh ignored two UN SC resolutions in 1994 (924 and 931) calling for an immediate ceasefire while he was shelling Aden, and he got away with it.

RFE: The United States has followed a UN condemnation of violence in Yemen with its own call for a transfer of power to begin “immediately” in the restive republic.

The UN Security Council on October 21 approved a resolution condemning the violence in Yemen, where President Ali Abdullah Saleh has resisted persistent protests and armed insurrection, and urged Saleh to step down without further delay. (Read on …)

Heavy Shelling in Aden

Filed under: Aden, South Yemen — by Jane Novak at 9:37 pm on Friday, October 21, 2011

It also could be state retribution for the massive pro-independence demonstration in Aden on Oct 14. 9/20 Update: or the whole thing is regime propaganda…

Yemen Post: Thursday evening, residents in Aden reported heavy shelling in the Crater area, saying that the explosions were so numerous and violent that they had to take cover into basements and nearby buildings….In other parts of the city gun-battles are raging between men in civilian clothes and regular Adeni residents.

With so much confusion and contradictory statements, it is really difficult to establish a clear picture. Some anti-regime protesters are claiming that the government is attacking the Revolution, while others are claiming that al-Qaeda elements are trying to take control over Aden as the town is strategically of great importance.


AM Australia: Fears al Qaeda is behind attacks on Port of Aden, Saturday, October 22, 2011 08:03:00

(Read on …)

UN SC res 2014 Yemen

Filed under: Yemen — by Jane Novak at 8:48 pm on Friday, October 21, 2011

al Bab

Yemen: UN Security Council resolution 2014

Resolution 2014 was adopted unanimously on 21 October 2011. It called for an end to violence and acceptance of the Gulf Cooperation Council transtion plan, with an orderly transfer of power

21 October 2011

Full text:

The Security Council,

Recalling its Press Statements of 24 September 2011, 9 August 2011, and 24 June 2011,

Expressing grave concern at the situation in Yemen,

Reaffirming its strong commitment to the unity, sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Yemen,

Welcoming the Secretary-General’s statement of 23 September 2011 urging all sides to engage in a constructive manner to achieve a peaceful resolution to the current crisis,

Welcoming the engagement of the Gulf Cooperation Council, and reaffirming the support of the Security Council for the GCC’s efforts to resolve the political crisis in Yemen,

Welcoming the continuing efforts of the Good Offices of the Secretary-General, including the visits to Yemen by the Special Adviser,

Taking note of the Human Rights Council resolution on Yemen (A/HRC/RES/18/19), and underlining the need for a comprehensive, independent and impartial investigation consistent with international standards into alleged human rights abuses and violations, with a view to avoiding impunity and ensuring full accountability, and noting in this regard the concerns expressed by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights,

Welcoming the statement by the Ministerial Council of the Gulf Cooperation Council on 23 September 2011 which called for the immediate signing by President Saleh and implementation of the Gulf Cooperation Council initiative, condemned the use of force against unarmed demonstrators, and called for restraint, a commitment to a full and immediate ceasefire and the formation of a commission to investigate the events that led to the killing of innocent Yemeni people,

Expressing serious concern at the worsening security situation, including armed conflict, and the deterioratingeconomic and humanitarian situation due to the lack of progress on a political settlement, and the potential for the further escalation of violence,

Reaffirming its resolutions 1325 (2000), 1820 (2008), 1888 (2009), 1889 (2009) and 1960 (2010) on women, peace, and security, and reiterating the need for the full, equal and effective participation of women at all stages of peace-processes given their vital role in the prevention and resolution of conflict and peacebuilding, reaffirming the key role women play in re-establishing the fabric of society and stressing the need for their involvement in conflict resolution in order to take into account their perspective and needs,

Expressing serious concernalsoaboutthe increasing number of internally displaced persons and refugees in Yemen, the alarming levels of malnutrition caused by drought and soaring fuel and food prices, the increasing interruption of basic supplies and social services, and increasingly difficult access to safe water and health care,

Expressing further serious concern at the increased threat from Al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula and the risk of new terror attacks in parts of Yemen, and reaffirming that terrorism in all forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security and that any acts of terrorism are criminal and unjustifiable regardless of their motivations,

Condemning all terrorist and other attacks against civilians and against the authorities, including those aimed at jeopardizing the political process in Yemen, such as the attack on the Presidential compound in Sana’a on 3 June 2011,

Recalling the Yemeni Government’s primary responsibility to protect its population,

Stressing that the best solution to the current crisis in Yemen is through an inclusive and Yemeni-led political process of transition that meets the legitimate demands and aspirations of the Yemeni people for change,

Reaffirming its support for the Presidential decree of 12 September which is designed to find a political agreement acceptable to all parties, and to ensure a peaceful and democratic transition of power, including the holding of early Presidential elections,

Stressing the importance of the stability and security of Yemen, particularly regarding overall international counter-terrorism efforts,

Mindful of its primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security under the Charter of the United Nations, and emphasizing the threats to regional security and stability posed by the deterioration of the situation in Yemen in the absence of a lasting political settlement,

1. Expresses profound regret at the hundreds of deaths, mainly of civilians, including women and children;

2. Strongly condemns the continued human rights violations by the Yemeni authorities, such as the excessive use of force against peaceful protestors as well as the acts of violence, use of force, and human rights abuses perpetrated by other actors, and stresses that all those responsible for violence, human rights violations and abuses should be held accountable;

3. Demands that all sides immediately reject the use of violence to achieve political goals;

4. Reaffirms its view that the signature and implementation as soon as possible of a settlement agreement on the basis of the Gulf Cooperation Council initiative is essential for an inclusive, orderly, and Yemeni-led process of political transition, notes the signing of the Gulf Cooperation Council initiative by some opposition parties and the General People’s Congress, calls on all parties in Yemen to commit themselves to implementation of a political settlement based upon this initiative, notes the commitment by the President of Yemen to immediately sign the Gulf Cooperation Council initiative and encourages him, or those authorized to act on his behalf, to do so, and to implement a political settlement based upon it, and calls for this commitment to be translated into action, in order to achieve a peaceful political transition of power, as stated in the Gulf Cooperation Council initiative and the Presidential decree of 12 September, without further delay;

5. Demands that the Yemeni authorities immediately ensure their actions comply with obligations under applicable international humanitarian and human rights law, allow the people of Yemen to exercise their human rights and fundamental freedoms, including their rights of peaceful assembly to demand redress of their grievances and freedom of expression, including for members of the media, and take action to end attacks against civilians and civilian targets by security forces;

6. Calls upon all concerned parties to ensure the protection of women and children, to improve women’s participation in conflict resolution and encourages all parties to facilitate the equal and full participation of women at decision-making levels;

7. Urges all opposition groups to commit to playing a full and constructive part in the agreement and implementation of a political settlement on the basis of the Gulf Cooperation Council initiative, and demands that all opposition groups refrain from violence, and cease the use of force to achieve political aims;

8. Further demands that all armed groups remove all weapons from areas of peaceful demonstration, refrain from violence and provocation, refrain from the recruitment of children, and urges all parties not to target vital infrastructure;

9. Expresses its concern over the presence of Al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula, and its determination to address this threat in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations and international law including applicable human rights, refugee and humanitarian law;

10. Encourages the international community to provide humanitarian assistance to Yemen, and in this regard requests all parties in Yemen to facilitate the work of the United Nations agencies and other relevant organizations, and ensure full, safe and unhindered access for the timely delivery of the humanitarian aid to persons in need across Yemen;

11. Requests the Secretary-General to continue his Good Offices, including through visits by the Special Adviser, and to continue to urge all Yemeni stakeholders to implement the provisions of this resolution, and encourage all States and regional organizations to contribute to this objective;

12. Requests the Secretary-General to report on implementation of this resolution within 30 days of its adoption and every 60 days thereafter;

13. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.

Open season on Yemenis: UN backs GCC plan, doesnt call for Saleh to go, no sanctions

Filed under: Diplomacy, Donors, UN, GCC, Transition, USA, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 5:54 pm on Friday, October 21, 2011

The protesters want a transitional council leading to a parliamentary system. The UN is backing the GCC plan which contains an immunity clause for Saleh and his cronies and re-entrenches the regime in under three months. Its astounding. With the ambiguity of neither endorsing or explicitly rejecting the immunity clause, and neither backing Saleh or calling for his departure, its a meaningless, toothless statement. And not only did Saleh renege on the GCC deal four times already, he ignored two UN SC resolutions in 1994. Speaking of which, the southerners are going to be so utterly disappointed that they were entirely overlooked as well.

CBS: The resolution was the first adopted by the U.N.’s most powerful body since the Arab Spring uprising in Yemen began eight months ago. It was clearly aimed at stepping up international pressure on Saleh, who was president of North Yemen from 1978 until 1990 when he became the first president of a unified Yemen….Philippe Bolopion, U.N. director for Human Rights Watch, said the organization welcomed “the long overdue condemnation of Yemeni government abuses,” but believed the council should have distanced itself from the council’s impunity deal.

“By signaling that there would be no consequence for the killing of Yemenis, the immunity deal has contributed to prolonging the bloodshed,” he said.

The White House said in a statement that the deal sends “a united and unambiguous signal to President Saleh that he must respond to the aspirations of the Yemeni people by transferring power immediately.”

The resolution calls for Saleh, or those authorized to act on his behalf, to immediately sign the Gulf Cooperation Council deal “to achieve a peaceful political transition of power … without further delay.”

Although the deal would give Saleh immunity, the resolution also underlines the need for an independent investigation into alleged human rights abuses “with a view to avoiding impunity.” — Unlike the resolution on Syria that was vetoed by Russia and China on Oct. 4, the Yemen resolution makes no mention of sanctions or any other measures.

With fighting intensifying, there are concerns that a civil war would significantly hurt efforts by the United States and Saudi Arabia to fight Yemen’s dangerous al Qaeda branch, and could turn the mountainous nation into a global haven for militants a short distance away from the vast oil fields of the Gulf and the key shipping lanes in the Arabian and Red seas.

Text below:

Security Council Condemns Human Rights Violations by Yemeni Authorities Abuses by ‘Other Actors’, after Months of Political Strife

Resolution 2014 (2011), Adopted Unanimously, Calls for End to Violence,

Acceptance of Gulf Cooperation Council Peace Plan, with Orderly Transfer of Power

Strongly condemning what it called human rights violations by authorities, and abuses by other actors, in Yemen following months of political strife, the Security Council this afternoon demanded that all sides immediately reject violence, and called on them to commit to a peaceful transition of power based on proposals by the major regional organization of the Arabian Gulf. (Read on …)

Awlaki’s son death in US drone strike provokes outrage in Yemen

Filed under: Air strike, Marib, airliner, anwar, obits, shabwa — by Jane Novak at 11:57 am on Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The Yemeni-American teenager is widely perceived in Yemen as an innocent, and therefore his death in a US drone strike is causing mass outrage on a level much, much greater than that of his father. There is a birth certificate showing he was 16 at the time of his death, and many photos have been posted. Like the December 2009 strikes, its the civilian casualties of US drone strikes that provoke mass public outrage. Yemeni would have liked to see some evidence on Awlaki or better yet, to bring him to trial. But killing his teen-age son, or any innocent teen, is way over the top of acceptable counter-terror collateral damage, Yemenis say.

Yemen Post According to the al-Awlaki family back in Sana’a, the Yemeni capital, Abdul rahman al-Awlaki, the cleric’s son would have run away from home after news of his father’s death in a desperate bid to find him. The 17 year-old was killed subsequently in an American air raid this Friday. Outraged, his family is now speaking out against what they call a murder.

The family’s statements to the WaPo is here. His family says he ran away from home and was having a picnic when the drone hit. However what he was doing with known terrorist Ibrahim al Banaa and Fahd al Quso’s brother is unknown and not raised in the article.

Related: I posted this below but it belongs in a drone-related post: Marib Press Tribes in Marib issued a statement saying Sheikh Saleh al Taaman was killed in the air rad with Ibrahim al Banaa but not reported killed by the regime. The Sheikh was connected to the state’s security policy and paid by Ghalib al Qamish (PSO) 100K YR/month; tribesmen accuse the regime of the manipulating the terror file and US CT ops to retain power. They say the Sheikh was not listed among the dead and that’s reason to ignore the regime’s fatality lists.

UN HCHR: murderers in Yemen must be prosecuted

Filed under: Diplomacy, Donors, UN, Judicial, Protest Fatalities, Security Forces, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 11:21 am on Tuesday, October 18, 2011

uh, yeah. Then Yemen needs a transitional council to guide the way to a parliamentary system, not a new strongman, as the very sophisticated Yemeni protesters have been calling for from day one, to the anguish of the naive and disorganized international community.

Spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: Rupert Colville, Location: Geneva, Subject: Yemen

We condemn in the strongest terms the reported killing of a number of largely peaceful protestors in Sana’a and Taiz as a result of the indiscriminate use of force by Yemeni security forces since Saturday (15 October). Hundreds were reportedly injured by this disproportionate use of force against unarmed protestors.

We are extremely concerned that security forces continue to use excessive force in a climate of complete impunity for crimes resulting in heavy loss of life and injury, despite repeated pledges by the Government to the contrary. We reiterate our call for an international, independent, transparent investigation, for accountability and for justice. Those responsible for the hundreds of killings since the protest movement began in Yemen more than 8 months ago must be prosecuted, regardless of rank or title. (Read on …)

French hostages in Yemen face execution deadline

Filed under: 9 hostages, Hadramout, Other Countries, Transition, aq statements, hostages — by Jane Novak at 11:03 am on Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Yemen Post reports the demands are money and the release of imprisoned terrorists, but the demands themselves and the timing of the kidnapping, following a French call for Saleh to step down, the odd video without any al Qaeda characteristics, the tension with (if not expulsion of) the French ambassador for his remarks, the bombing of TOTAL’s pipeline and the pending UN resolution may all indicate the statement is yet another attempt by the Sana’a regime to spin the media away from the slaughter in the capital.

The situation echos that of the German hostages, a crime thought committed by Saleh loyalists linked to drug smugglers and al Qaeda. As the recent West Point paper pointed out, many of the security officials murdered by al Qaeda were in fact counter-narcotics agents, and that’s another area where the footprints of al Qaeda and the Sana’a regime overlap.

Obama should grab that sleazy slimy mass murderer rat Saleh by the throat and throttle him until he gives up these and all the Yemeni hostages. Dozens more severely wounded Yemenis were kidnapped by security forces in the last days, including women, but likely the Yemenis will get much less publicity. The regime has got to go.

Yemen Post: French Hostages in Yemen Face New Challenges

On May 28th, 2011, 3 French aid workers were kidnapped in the eastern Yemeni province of Hadramaut as they were conducting a field trip near Sayyun. (Read on …)

Yemeni CT chief Ahmed Saleh’s $5 million dollar condo in DC

Filed under: Biographies, Counter-terror, Diplomacy, USA, Yemen's Lies — by Jane Novak at 10:24 am on Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Luxury Condo, For Saleh or Rent



Shortly after being named one of the three winners of the Nobel Peace
Prize this month, Yemeni activist Tawakkul Karman said that if embattled
President Ali Abdullah Saleh is driven from power, investigators should
immediately begin searching for assets held abroad by members of his
government. The money “plundered” by the regime, she said, should be
“brought back to the Yemeni people,” according to an account on an
opposition website. (Read on …)

Fourth day of state attacks in Sanaa, many fatalities, AQ threatens tribesmen in Abyan, Update: Marib tribes issue statement

Filed under: Abyan, Counter-terror, Islamic Imirate, Protest Fatalities, Sana'a, Taiz, aq statements — by Jane Novak at 9:13 am on Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Update 9am EST, Wednesday: “Now We Have 400 youth in Alqaa area , they are surrounded and being blocked by the Thugs and the Family security forces at this time.” I lost track of the fatalities. The CSM has 12 Saturday and 4 Sunday and there was more Monday. AP has seven killed Tuesday, today, already.

A woman, Azeeza Abdo Othman was killed in Taiz, a residential home bombed in Sadaa killing an entire family, the protest square was bombed and clashes are flaring between the AMA pro-rev forces and Saleh’s family’s forces. The Guardian reports protesters are writing their names on their chests to identify them if they get murdered by their government.

Update 2: Marib Press” Tribes in Marib issued a statement saying Sheikh Saleh al Taaman was killed in the air rad with Ibrahim al Banaa but not reported killed by the regime. The Sheikh was connected to the state’s security policy and paid by Ghalib al Qamish (PSO) 100K YR/month; tribesmen accuse the regime of the manipulating the terror file and US CT ops to retain power. They say the Sheikh was not listed among the dead and that’s reason to ignore the regime’s fatality lists.

Update 3: HOOD reports over 400 arrested and dozens of injured protesters were kidnapped–again. The Saleh regime has been taking the injured all along to hide the number of fatalities and at least two credible reports of mass graves were forwarded since February.

Original: The Gulf of Aden Security Review is a great resource. Current updates include the state shelling the protest square in Sanaa, (there’s also fatalities in Taiz) and AQ issues a vid threatening tribesmen who are fighting against the AQ occupation of Abyan.

Yemen Security Brief: Fighting in Sana’a continued into a third day. There have been ongoing clashes between pro-government troops and defected tribesmen, loyal to Hashid tribal confederation leader Sheikh Sadiq al Ahmar, in al Hasaba district and between pro-government troops and defected First Armored Division troops along al Zubayri Street in Sana’a. Witnesses report that three people died when a shell landed near a makeshift hospital near Tagheer (Change) Square in Sana’a as well. Government snipers reportedly opened fire at thousands of protesters from the rooftops. The First Armored Division released a statement saying that a major and nine of its troops were killed “by treacherous sniping and shelling of the positions of the division.” In Taiz, medical officials reported that one woman was killed by government troops and seven others were injured. Government troops killed at least 12 people and injured hundreds in a similar march on October 15. Also, fighting between pro-government troops and opposition tribesmen killed 17 other people in al Hasaba district of Sana’a.[1]—-

Tribal sources reported that tribesmen ambushed at least five al Qaeda-linked militants as they were transporting military equipment in Zinjibar in Abyan governorate. Fighting that followed the ambush reportedly killed four militants and one tribesman. Yemeni security forces reportedly captured three suspected al Qaeda-linked militants.[4]

A video called, “Are the Two Groups Equal,” was produced by al Raya Media Productions, an alleged media outlet of the al Qaeda-linked militant group, Ansar al Sharia, and posted on jihadist forums on October 14. The video features images of martyrs, tribal fighters being killed in a suicide bombing in Abyan governorate, and excerpts from speeches made by al Qaeda leader Ayman al Zawahiri. Additionally, Ansar al Sharia threatened death to tribes who are working alongside the Yemeni government.[5]

AI: Withdraw immunity clause from GCC agreement

Filed under: Donors, UN, Protest Fatalities, Transition — by Jane Novak at 9:01 am on Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Also if I might add, what they want is an empowered PARLIAMENTARY SYSTEM not a new consensus president.


17 October 2011 The international community must send a clear message that those responsible for extrajudicial executions, torture and enforced disappearances in Yemen will be brought to justice as part of any transition agreement, Amnesty International said today after at least 15 more people were reported killed by the security forces in the capital Sana’a since Saturday.

A power-transfer deal brokered by the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) appears to offer blanket immunity to President Ali Abdullah Saleh and some of those serving under him, and could prevent criminal investigations and prosecutions for hundreds of protester deaths in recent months, as well as a string of serious human rights violations in the past. (Read on …)

Yemen’s Southern Independence Movement protests 10/14

Filed under: Aden, Civil Unrest, South Yemen, photos/gifs — by Jane Novak at 8:23 am on Saturday, October 15, 2011

The southern movement held protests across the south yesterday, 10/14/11, the 48th anniversary of the birth of the anti-colonial independence movement in 1963 that led to the expulsion of the UK and the formation of the PDRY in 1967 . Large pro-independence protests were seen in Aden, Hadramout, Lahj and Shabwa in contrast to the previously low, if not non-existent, turn out by southerners for the 2011 Yemeni Youth Revolution protests. Protesters were asked to go to Aden or Radfan if possible. These numbers as shown in the photos are at about the levels that southerners protested from 2007-2010. The Southern Movement seeks an independent state and claims that the south was occupied by Northern Yemen following the 194 civil war, contravening UN SC resolutions 928 and 931.

SM leaders and members within Yemen reject efforts by expats like al Attas and ANM to find a consensus for a federal system, including results of the Cairo conferences. Last month, General Nassar al Nuba invited UN envoy Jamal bin Omar to the south to discuss the SM position and opportunities for resolution. Beyond a handful of individual efforts by YRR activists, no international or official YYR efforts have been made to engage the Southern Movement. Several southern leaders were appointed without discussion to the National Revolutionary Council and all immediately resigned. The photo below was taken yesterday in al Mansoura, Aden:


The following in Radfan, Lahj:



Photos Hadramout here and also here.

Ten killed in Sana’a today, ongoing violence

Filed under: Protest Fatalities, Sana'a — by Jane Novak at 7:54 am on Saturday, October 15, 2011

Early stats: – 10 killed, 78 Injured by bullets, 140 Injured by tear gas, 15 other injures and 11 in critical condition; roof top snipers, blocked ambulances, no meds. At least 861 people have been killed and 25,000 wounded since mass protests erupted across the country.

Draft UNSC resolution on Yemen

Filed under: Donors, UN, Presidency, Transition, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 7:07 am on Saturday, October 15, 2011

Lets hope it has more impact than 1994’s UN SC resolutions 928 and 931 which Saleh totally ignored to the great detriment of Yemen and unity.

Draft SCR on Yemen
The Security Council,
Expressing grave concern at the situation in Yemen,
Recalling its Press Statements of 25 September, 9 August and 23 June,
Welcoming the Secretary-General’s statement of 23 September urging all sides to engage in a constructive manner to achieve a peaceful resolution to the current crisis,
Welcoming the engagement of the Gulf Cooperation Council and the Secretary-General’s Good Offices,

Welcoming the Human Rights Council Resolution on Yemenduring the 18th Session,
Welcoming the statement by the Ministerial Council of the Gulf Cooperation Council on 24 September which called for the immediate signing by President Saleh and implementation of the Gulf Cooperation Council initiative, condemned the use of force against unarmed demonstrators and called for restraint and a commitment to a full and immediate ceasefire and the formation of a commission to investigate the events that led to the killing of innocent Yemeni people, (Read on …)

AQAP Egyptian Ibrahim al Banaa killed by drone in Yemen, Balhaf pipeline hit

Filed under: Air strike, Al-Qaeda, Iraq, LNG, TI: External, obits — by Jane Novak at 6:46 am on Saturday, October 15, 2011

The seven AQAP killed in Azzam, Shabwa included Egyptian Ibrahim al Banna who was among 28 arrested in Hadramout in 2008. The group was put on trial in 2010 for forming an armed gang; seven of the 28 were tried in absentia and its unclear whether al Banna still was in custody or not. An article written at the time of the trial ties him to Iraqi al Qaeda. Also killed in the strike were Anwar al Awlaki’s son and cousin, the ABC article notes. A June drone strike in the same area killed Abu al Harithy Jr. of the Zarchawi cell that admitted fighting in Iraq and was tried in 2006; the court accepted their defense argument that jihad is a duty in occupied Muslim lands. Update: Tribal leaders said that Farhan al Quso also was killed in the attack. He is the brother of Fahd Mohammed al-Quso, a particularly elusive Al Qaeda fugitive who helped plan the 2000 bombing of the USS Cole attack.

WaPo: Yemeni officials familiar with the U.S. military drive against al-Qaida in Yemen said a shift of strategy by the Americans was finally yielding results, with human assets on the ground directly providing actionable intelligence to U.S. commanders rather than relying entirely on Yemen’s security agencies the Americans had long considered inefficient or even suspected of leaking word on planned operations. They said there were as many as 3,000 informers on the U.S. payroll around the country — some without even knowing it.

The terrorists targeted a pipeline in Shabwa carrying LNG from Marib to Balhaf in retaliation.

ABC The head of the media department of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula has been killed in a trio of US air strikes on militant outposts in Yemen, and gunmen retaliated by blowing up a gas export pipeline.

The death of Ibrahim al-Banna, an Egyptian described by Yemeni officials as high on their wanted list, is a fresh blow to the Islamist group regarded by Washington as the most serious threat to the United States, following the killing of Anwar al-Awlaki last month…The ministry confirmed al-Banna was among seven suspected Al Qaeda militants killed, adding that he was wanted “internationally” for “planning attacks both inside and outside Yemen.”

Al-Banna was “in charge of the media arm of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula” and was one of the group’s “most dangerous operatives,” it added….

Residents and officials said the 322-kilometre pipeline, which links gas fields in Maarib, east of Sanaa, to a $US4.5 billion Total-led liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant, was blown up soon after the raids.

Sources at Total told Reuters the pipeline was blown up in two places, stopping the gas supplies that feed the Belhaf LNG plant. Witnesses said the flames were visible from several kilometres away.

Early Saturday, a local security official told Xinhua that a pipeline carrying gas from Marib to liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant in Balhaf port was blown up in Shabwa province.”The targeted gas pipeline located in Rodhoum area, a few miles away from the location of the French giant TOTAL-led Yemeni LNG Company in Balhaf port in southeast province of Shabwa,” the official told Xinhua by phone.
“The bombing took place on Saturday at about 1:30 a.m. local time, just a few hours after Yemeni warplanes hit hideouts of al- Qaida militants in neighboring towns of Azzan and Rawda,” he said on condition of anonymity. The official blamed al-Qaida for the attack.

An engineer of TOTAL-led Yemeni LNG company confirmed to Xinhua the bombing of the company’s gas pipeline. “Huge fire at the hit pipeline can be seen from miles away and the company already suspended gas production,” he said.

Sanaa regime’s support of terrorists in Abyan detailed

Filed under: Counter-terror, Islamic Imirate, Security Forces, Yemen's Lies, state jihaddists, terror financing — by Jane Novak at 9:38 am on Thursday, October 13, 2011

This article does a very good job at untangling the relationships between the regime, the terrorists in Abyan, Ali Mohsen’s jihaddist allies including Nabi, and it names three regime loyalists who were killed fighting alongside the al Qaeda in Abyan.

Yemen Times SANA’A, Oct 12 — In his major speech, Yemen’s embattled President Ali Abdullah Saleh, on Saturday, accused defected major general Ali Mohsen Al-Ahmar of aiding armed Islamists. It is believed that these Islamists are of the same consortium that took control of Abyan late last May. (Read on …)

Half million IDPs in Yemen; 1/3 kids malnourished, health services nearly non-existant

Filed under: Abyan, Children, Donors, UN, Economic, Refugees, Saada War, poverty/ hunger — by Jane Novak at 9:50 am on Wednesday, October 12, 2011

IDP’s in Yemen exceed a half million: 300K Saada, 100K Abyan, 200K (at least) Somalis; one doctor per 100K in some areas, one third of children malnourished, education on hold, humanitarian access denied and the whole UN relief project is underfunded by 40%:

Raxanreeb: U.N. Emergency Relief Coordinator Valerie Amos said millions of people in Yemen face “a daily struggle for survival” due to conflict, poverty, drought, soaring food prices and collapsing state services. (Read on …)

Sheikh al Zindani’s son trashes Nobel Prize as Zionist something something, derides Yemeni winner, Tawakkol Karman

Filed under: Civil Rights, Islah, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 9:45 am on Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Excellent! It shows the acres and acres of daylight between them: “Zindani: Nobel Prize is not supervised by a Moslem and is given to the Jews and their collaborators” who undermine Muslims, promote mixing of the genders, hatch plots blah blah. I was rather surprised by several leading US conservatives who, upon hearing the news of the Nobel Peace Prize, promptly published incorrect conclusions and/or speculation about Tawakkol and her relationship to Islah and Zindani without any real knowledge of any of them or of the position of the Yemeni revolutionaries on the political parties, religious pluralism or equal rights.

These public innuendos were made in the media without even researching Karman’s years of work in defense of civil liberties, to raise the marriage age, on behalf of Yemeni Jews, journalists, poor villagers, dialysis patients etc etc. Instead they wondered how she feels about…bin Laden without a shred of evidence beyond a strained and tenuous relationship with Islah, which is a very complex party to start with. This should streamline my response to one sentence: al Zindani’s son called her a Zionist.

Update: No, I’m not a Muslim, but a Roman Catholic Republican New Yorker (for the brain surgeons asking me to identify my religion), and I know who the extremists are in Yemen and who the heroes are. (Read on …)

CCRYC report Oct 10 (coordinating council for the Yemeni revolutionary youth)

Filed under: Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 1:19 pm on Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Online at PDF cast; English.

The CCYRC brings together hundreds of independent revolutionary youth groups and is not represented by the JMP (opposition political party alliance) or by the National Revolutionary Council. The revolutionaries in their entirety have been frozen out of all international discussions and negotiations about Yemen; they don’t conform to US expectations of organization or perhaps, in calling for the ouster of the entire regime, are a bit too revolutionary for the US. However the horrible events in Egypt show the danger of an incomplete regime removal.

Suicide bomber detonates at PSO gate in Aden, Yemen, Updated

Filed under: Aden, Security Forces, attacks, suicide attacks — by Jane Novak at 1:12 pm on Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Photo from scene; you don’t want to see the close-ups:


Its just doesn’t add up as actual AQAP somehow. Maybe a splinter faction from the amorphous group in Abyan, but its too early to tell. Maybe another one of those last seen arrested in Abyan or one of the 16 AQ prison escapees sheltering in one of the presidential palaces. The 26 Sep says two policemen were injured in the suicide bombing. In addition, a car bomb was planted in an officials car and exploded, killing him, as he left the air base in Lahj; it seems obvious it was planted while he was at the base:

TASS: On Tuesday, an explosion in Yemen killed a high-ranking military commander: Amin al Shami’s car exploded after he left a military aircraft base in the province of Lahej. Two people, who accompanied him, survived. The explosion was set by the same terrorist group which set an explosion at a police station on Saturday, and attempted on the life of Yemen’s defense minister in Aden last month. (ed- the driver of the Def Min’s car said there was slumped body in the car which exploded as they drove by and the bomber was last seen when arrested in Abyan.)

AFP: ADEN — A colonel in the Yemeni air force and a police officer were killed in separate attacks in south Yemen on Tuesday, military and police officials said.
(Read on …)

AQAP disaggregated, bumped: CTC report and CMEC report

Filed under: Al-Qaeda, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 9:11 am on Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Post bumped a) because the CTC report is very important and challenges some long held assumptions on the relationship between AQAP and Yemen’s tribal structure and b) I need to work from it.

Also read the excellent, “Yemen’s Youth Revolution” by Chatham House’s Kate Nevens, who nails, “The Arab Spring: Implications for British Policy” in chapter 6.

Original: The Combating Terrorism Center at West Point has a valuable report on AQAP that anyone interested in Yemen or AQAP should download: A False Foundation? AQAP, Tribes and Ungoverned Spaces in Yemen

This study specifically focuses on events and actors in Yemen’s eastern governorates, often described as Yemen’s most tribal and an epicenter of AQAP activity. This discussion of the tribes of Marib and al-Jawf is the result of twelve months of research conducted in Yemen by the author, including fieldwork in the governorate of Marib. His network of contacts and dozens of interviews with tribal leaders and tribesmen suggest that although tribes have long been cited as a primary resiliency mechanism for AQAP, the group enjoys no formal alliance with tribes in either Marib or al-Jawf. Likewise, there is ample evidence to suggest that, contrary to popular analysis, the group’s strength and durability does not stem from Yemen’s tribes.

By prioritizing local dynamics, it is also possible to examine al-Qa`ida in the Arabian Peninsula relative to its jihadist antecedents in Yemen. This comparison challenges the notion that Yemen’s “weak state” is incapable of defeating jihadist groups. The government of `Ali `Abdullah Salih effectively diminished three predecessor jihadist groups through a combination of cooption and coercion, successfully integrating and repressing members of Islamic Jihad in Yemen, the Aden-Abyan Army, and nascent al-Qa`ida in Yemen. Refocusing attention on AQAP and its local operations also makes it clear that the group is unusual in both intent and capability from those groups that preceded it in Yemen. (Read on …)

Yemeni Observatory for Human Rights calls for protection

Filed under: Civil Rights, Civil Society, Sana'a, political violence — by Jane Novak at 7:59 am on Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The Yemeni Observatory for Human Rights calls for urgent intervention to prevent Yahya Saleh from storming its head quarters in Sanaa, (ar). The Sana’a regime in Yemen, getting closer to a long overdue war crimes trial in the ICC, is attacking the keepers of the evidence; HOOD’s library of human rights abuses was previously burnt to the ground. Idiot Saleh fails to realize that the state’s conduct of the Saada war in and of itself is enough to convict him of collective punishment; the repetitive lethal attacks on southern protesters (2007-2011) are also crimes against humanity. The 500+ protesters killed by state security forces since February are a third and separate range of crimes.

Yemen nation, among evasion and revolution

Filed under: Yemen, guest posts — by Jane Novak at 7:15 am on Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The Yemeni nation among evasion and revolution
by Amr Mohammed Al Raishi

Ali Saleh president is known throughout the period of his rule as a devious & unpredictable leader. He had caused Yemeni lives to be filled with misery and all kinds of humiliation and who let Yemen become a failed state, despite the availability of resources in Yemen which are capable to make the Yemeni economic growth and social stability.

But President Saleh took advantage of the wealth and resources of Yemen to transfer to his own person and his family to achieve one goal, which is building up an empire of oppression and corruption to continue his dictatorship.

The question that presents itself … What is the secret of survival of President Saleh throughout these long years?

Simply Saleh excelled in creating internal crises and dissemination of regional and sectarian strife> He even keep going to create a dispute between major tribes in Yemen. Most of Yemen people know very well how Saleh facilitates sale of weapons to fighting tribes from the army stores.

Saleh regime had mislead Yemenis through use of dirty tactics such as occurrence of separation in the south and that Yemen will be invaded by Islamists in the case of Saleh leaving ruling of Yemen.

Unfortunately he also succeeded in misleading international community under pretext of fighting terrorism.

And on the other side, he is supporting and make a lot of facilities to Al Qaeda in order to continue in reaping to himself the benefits from international support against terrorism.

Saleh president has invested in Al Qaeda terrorism and promoted it overseas, in order to achieve some political and financial benefits

the repressive rule of president Saleh never paid attention that will cause a negative influence regarding the reputation of the Yemeni people .

The ultimate proof against Saleh and his deceitful by the use of terrorism is why was Al Qaeda not confined in spite of international support, especially U.S. Aid ?

Yemeni people’s patience is over. It is time to eradicate this nightmare that has been 33 years.

The time has come that the entire international community, especially America, in relation to political initiatives to transfer power peacefully to understand that these will not never work with Saleh

Many times he has promised to sign an agreement to transfer power to vice president Mr. Hadi as per the Gulf initiative , but he always backed out at last moments for unreasonable reasons.

Saleh’s evasion drives Yemen to military conflict which leads the country to more killings and bath of blood. Most of Yemenis have determined to continue their revolution till they achieve victory .

Finally, the Yemeni revolution emerged from the womb of Yemenis’ suffering from oppression, humiliation, injustice and inequality in rights and duties, which has been practiced by Saleh intentionally.

Revolutionaries in Yemen have been convinced and there is an exorbitant price will pay for getting freedom and dignity.

Yemeni is in urgent need from countries of the world’s great powers, especially USA , to contribute effectively to remove the cover of international legitimacy from President Saleh’s regime and to be on the side of the oppressed people of Yemen.

Along with standing firmly against those who support President Saleh, just For keeping the revolution in Yemen away from victory, in order to prevent winds of change from entering their countries.

Amr Mohammed Al Raishi

EU conclusions on Yemen

Filed under: Donors, UN, Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 11:37 am on Monday, October 10, 2011

Ceasefire, Hadi and GCC plan, urgent need for access to distribute aid, investigation:

Consilium Euorpe, PDF:

Council conclusions on Yemen
3117th FOREIGN AFFAIRS Council meeting
Luxembourg, 10 October 2011 (Read on …)

Ali Mohsen says Bin Shamlan won the 2006 presidential election, results were rigged

Filed under: Donors, UN, Elections, Presidency, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 10:30 am on Monday, October 10, 2011

There was a lot of popular support for Bin Shamlan, but I have no idea if this is true. Even the level of violations documented by the EU observers made their declaration of a “mostly free and fair” election a farce.

Mohsen also says that Muhammed Sudam was kidnapped not as a reporter but as Saleh’s translator, in order to press for the release of 400 kidnapped by the National Security; although this was the way things were done for decades, and it may be the only thing Saleh understands, its not what should be done, at all.

Mareb Press : NYR | MasdarOnline | Major General Ali Mohsen Al-Ahmar, commander of the First Armored Division and commander of the North-West military said that President Saleh did not win the 2006 elections.

Major General Ali Mohsen revealed during a meeting on Monday with reporters in Sana’a that Saleh threatened “to use aircrafts and tanks to prevent Faisal Bin Shamlan from entering the Presidential Palace” adding “I was part of all of Saleh’s election campaighns and I was surprised when he told me that the computer made a mistake and showed Bin Shamlan’s win, and then the computer was checked and Saleh was declared to be the winner.” (Read on …)

Al Qaeda terror group hiding in Yemen confirms death of Awlaki

Filed under: Air strike, US jihaddis, anwar, obits — by Jane Novak at 9:51 am on Monday, October 10, 2011

AQAP issues message confirming death of Anwar al-Awlaki: Site Intel

Safe copy at Jihadology has link to original post: al-Malāḥim Media presents new statement from al-Qā’idah in the Arabian Peninsula: “Blood of the Martyr, Light and Fire: Statement on the Martyrdom of Shaykh Anwar al-’Awlaqī and his Colleagues”

No mention of al Assiri per @Inteltweet but Sami confirmed dead as well.

“The blood of the sheik (al-Awlaki) and his brothers will not go in vain; there are heroes behind him who do not sleep under oppression, and they will retaliate soon,” the group said. “We and the Americans are at war: we get them and they get us, and the end is for those who are patient – they are the ones who will be victorious.” FOX

The full statement at Flashpoint here has a little different translation; also includes AQAP’s trashing the Yemeni opposition parties.

Al Hittar calls for public accounting of leadership finances since 1978, and warns of National Security plot vs. opposition leaders

Filed under: Security Forces, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 8:26 am on Monday, October 10, 2011

Ah yes, the National Security is the branch of the security forces that has always been most active in targeting journalists (kidnapping, beating, defamation) and is the one the US is most tied to on counter-terror. He is exactly right about the financial aspect, and most of the Yemeni leadership not only has stolen and embezzled state funds, but most lead mega-corporations that are rife with corruption and bribery.

From opposition website associated w/ AMA, Yemen Fox The resigned endowments minister judge. Hamood AL-Hetar accused officials at the National Security in Yemen of setting plans to deform the image of opposition figures who are calling for president Saleh to step aside.

He said these plans started to tarnish opposition figures images through fabricated news then accusations, ended with killing.

“I am one of the targeted figures by the National Security in Yemen, Alhatar said. (Read on …)

Campaign to Break the Silence in Yemen, video

Filed under: photos/gifs — by Jane Novak at 6:18 pm on Sunday, October 9, 2011

Also: An art show by revolutionaries

Reuters correspondent in Yemen/ Presidential translator kidnapped

Filed under: Media, Tribes, Yemen, hostages — by Jane Novak at 12:55 pm on Sunday, October 9, 2011

Through the years, I would see a Reuters article that made my head spin because it mis-characterized events entirely, and the article was usually written by Presidential employee Sudam. Nonetheless, I am waiting for the widespread denunciations by the Yemeni protesters of this tactic by Mohsen’s forces, if thats what happened.

Gulf News: Sana’a: Mohammad Sudam, Reuters correspondent in Yemen, was kidnapped on Saturday night in Sana’a by forces loyal to defected general Ali Mohsin Al Ahmer, Yemen ministry of defence announced on Sunday.

Sudam, who is also working as a translator to the Yemen President Ali Abdullah Saleh, was arrested at a checkpoint run by Al Ahmer’s forces when he was en route from Sana’a airport to his house.

There has been no comment yet from Al Ahmer’s office. Yemen Journalist’s Syndicate condemned the arrest of Sudam and called for his immediate release.

Yemen’s compulsive liar lies again

Filed under: Presidency — by Jane Novak at 10:01 am on Sunday, October 9, 2011

See how well he does it, all the tickers say: Yemen’s president to step down. Saleh has been saying it since 1999, repeatedly through 2005/2006 and made similar announcements dozens of times since the rev began. The half truth was timed after Tawakkol’s Nobel and before the UN SC council meeting Tuesday.

I haven’t seen one report tying the three events together or noting that the dictator has never kept his word on anything, ever, literally. I can’t believe Saleh’s statement got any traction in the media at all, especially when gov’t spoxmen immediately clarified that he has no intention of stepping down anytime in the near future. Its like publishing Gadaffi’s rants without any skepticism.

INI Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh announced Saturday in a televised speech he will step down “in the coming days”.

But Saleh has made the same speech more than once before in the past year during protests that have rocked Yemen.

“I reject power and I will continue to reject it, and I will leave power in the coming days,” Saleh told the nation in a speech on state television.

Yemeni Activist Tawakkol Karman wins Nobel Peace Prize

Filed under: Civil Rights, Islah, Yemen, reconfigurations — by Jane Novak at 5:48 am on Friday, October 7, 2011


Update: this is Tawakkol’s English website at Woman Journalists Without Chains (WJWC) that has all her reports on press freedom and clips of several of her interviews. I’m posting it for those people who have no idea of who she is, fail to do research and yet feel compelled to jump to bizarre conclusions based on her association with Islah, a relationship which is in reality quite fractured. Islah is the main opposition party in Yemen and contains many wings- tribal, reformist, fundamentalist, activist and modernist- it’s a compendium of often competing interests. Islah formed an alliance in 2003 with the Shiite parties, the Socialists, the Nasserites and the Baathists that is called the Joint Meeting Parties (JMP). The Youth Revolution of which Tawakkol is a leader notes the JMP is ineffectual, corrupt and opportunistic, and the youth have rejected all JMP negotiations on their behalf. And al Zindani was a long time ally of President Saleh; in fact, Saleh launched his presidential campaign from al Iman university in 2006.

Original: I’m rather touched and very happy to learn of Tawakkol Karman winning the Nobel. Not only did Tawwakol lead the Yemeni protests since February, she led them in Freedom Square for the two years prior, protesting for a newspaper license and media freedom and a range of other causes that came along. I’m glad the committee made such a good choice this year. Tawwakol heads a journalist organization since 2005 which for published semi-annual reports on widespread abuses and denial of media freedom, and they published several on corruption showing exactly who in the the state stole the billions where and how. Tawakkol supported a wide range of civil rights issues in Yemen. She is a leader of the current Yemeni revolution, always on the front lines facing down the rifles. Update: “Yemen will remain happy, and will even spread it’s happiness to the whole world,” Tawakol Karman said today.
(Read on …)

Awlaki lived in house of GPC official in Sanaa for five months before death: Aden Press

Filed under: GPC, Yemen, anwar, obits — by Jane Novak at 11:25 pm on Thursday, October 6, 2011

This article says Anwar was living in Sanaa in the house of a GPC member when the National Security transfered him to al Jawf for his own security, but put a transmitter in his car… Anyway this article contradicts the Ahram article, unless the National Security transferred him to Afrag’s house and then he went to visit Okaimi. Update : al Zindani does have a huge farm in Al-Jawf .. it’s about 10 kilometers x 10 kilometers.

Aden Press

The leader of the al-Qaeda al-Awlaki Anwar Al-Nasser after he left the United States of America live in the hometown of Shabwa South Yemen. However, knowing the United States exact location of his residence made ​​the life of Anwar al-Awlaki is in danger.

This situation made ​​the authorities of Sanaa, which was used and the presence on its territory to blackmail the United States of America for their financial and political feeling that his life is in danger, and that the killing may lead to loss of a chicken that lays Bayada dollars. He was secretly transferred to Sana’a, lived in a house, an official in the ruling party and a family close to him for five months. (Read on …)

Al Awlaki was moving between al Zindani’s farm, al Okaimi’s and Afrag’s in al Jawf: al Ahram

Filed under: Air strike, Yemen, anwar, obits — by Jane Novak at 8:35 pm on Thursday, October 6, 2011

Update: does al Zindani even have a farm in Al Jawf? Some people say no. I dont know,could be knee-jerk reaction by people who don’t want to give a bad rep to the rev, w/a. Anwar and al Zindani did have relations. Also the report at Aden Press (scroll up) gives an account of Awlaki’s time prior to arriving in al Jawf as sheltering with GPC members. Update 2: yes Zindani does have a huge farm in Al-Jawf .. it’s about 10 kilometers x 10 kilometers farm

Original; Many foreign al Qaeda still at Okaimi’s al Ahram says.

al Ahram: The locals told Al-Ahram Weekly that Al-Awlaki came to Al-Jawf 10 days ago and he was staying in three places. The house of Salem Saleh Afrag, the local driver who was killed with him, was the first place. Al-Awlaki was killed immediately after he left this house. Khamis Afrag, brother of Salem, is a leading member in the Islamist opposition party, Islah.

The second place was the farm of local tribal leader Amin Al-Okaimi in Al-Jar. Al-Okaimi is a member of parliament and chairman of Islah. Many Al-Qaeda operatives including Egyptians, Algerians and Libyans are supposedly still hiding in the farm of Al-Okaimi until now, according to local sources.

Al-Okaimi and his tribesmen have been controlling the eastern province of Al-Jawf since March when ex-general Mohsen encouraged them to dismiss the president’s loyalists and replace them with rebel troops.

The third place frequented by Al-Awlaki was the farm of the Islamist leader Abdel-Majid Al-Zandani, wanted by the UN and US as a global terrorist, in the area of Nebta in the same province of Al-Jawf.

Al Zindani was a decades long time Saleh ally. In fact, Saleh announced his presidential candidacy from Al Iman university in 2006. After the March massacre in Sana’a, al Zindani defected to the rev but was jeered by some. He left Sana’a and went to Arhab, which had been under bombardment for some time. Meanwhile, the Houthis are fighting against Islahis in al Jawf and Oakimi is Ali Mohsen’s overseerer of the province.

Hard to say who this is an indictment of, if its true (ye old local sources) beyond al Zindani for sheltering him, and both Mohsen and Saleh for their long term tolerance, and who gets the credit in Yemen; there’s so many possible ways to look at it. As I said before, its just a clusterfck.

Sadiq al Ahmar: Al Qaeda escapees living in presidential palace villas

Filed under: 23 ESCAPE, Presidency, Sana'a, Yemen, Yemen's Lies, state jihaddists — by Jane Novak at 6:45 pm on Thursday, October 6, 2011

A France 24 interview with Sadiq al Ahmar is here on Youtube. Sheik AlAhmar on the vid says, “Ali Abdullah Saleh inserted AlQeada, to ’suck milk from the American cow.’ The biggest evidence of this relationship is that of those who escaped from prison in Hadramout, 16 of them have been at villas that belong to the presidential palace in Alsafiyah for more than two weeks.” (A google search says Alsafiyah is a district in Sanaa.)

Gee, it sounds a lot less crazy when Sadiq al Ahmar and Hamoud al Hittar say it, doesn’t it? (For al Hittar, see Al Hittar says Saleh regime pays al Qaeda in Abyan through security chiefs .) My article at PMJ covers the same topic, Yemen’s Theater of the Absurd.

I think I first used the term “false flag attack” to describe Yemeni foreign policy in 2007 and noted the regime deploying Al Qaeda as mercenaries in 2005. I’ve seen nothing that disputes the general premise since. Someone should tell General Mr. Patraeus that Saleh did not miraculously reform after hearing about the “assassination plot.” They probably knew the phone was wired.

Taiz doctor writes President Obama: its the Yemeni people verses a despot

Filed under: Taiz, USA, War Crimes, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 2:15 pm on Thursday, October 6, 2011

To; Mr. Barak Obama,
The president of the U.S.A,
The White House, Washington D.C,
From: Dr. Abdulkader Alguneid, MD,
Taiz, Yemen.

Dear Mr. President,
You know that Saleh, has been president of The Yemen for 33yrs and I’m sure that you would agree that this is gross. You, Know that economy and standards of living are deteriorating, regularly and progressively. So, none can claim that Saleh, is, still, presiding, because of his competence. Saleh, has overstayed his welcome, for 33yrs, because of his monopoly on the military, security, Finance, Resources, Media, and Wisdom.

We, utterly, were disgusted with him and enduring his era is an evidence of Yemen people patience and stamina. Putting up with his failures, gaffes and farce acts was a source of great pain to us. (Read on …)

Yemen’s NRC Deplores Bombing of Taiz City, Medical Supplies Urgently Needed: Press Release

Filed under: Medical, Taiz, War Crimes, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 2:07 pm on Thursday, October 6, 2011

Yemen’s NRC Deplores Bombing of Taiz City, Medical Supplies Urgently Needed


Sanaa, Yemen (October 6, 2011)—Yemen’s Revolutionary National Council condemned the Sana’a regime’s random shelling of Taiz City and highlighted the urgent need for medical supplies for wounded citizens. (Read on …)

US only interested in al Qaeda seeking to attack US, not all Yemeni militants

Filed under: Counter-terror, USA, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 9:00 am on Thursday, October 6, 2011

Good! Anybody with a beard is not a good criteria, and US refusal to accept Yemen’s claims that they need Saleh because the entire popular opposition in Yemen is AQAP or pre-AQAP is a smart move by the Obama administration. Apparently the US significantly cut military aid as attacks on protesters grew. The WaPo reports the US remains primarily focused on de-throning Saleh and effecting a political transition. And officials appear to be watching the US trained units closely, also good.

Shifting US policy, especially when there are so many vested interests, is like moving a mountain and sometimes takes as long. But if what I’m seeing is correct, then the US turned a corner in the debate and has a more realistic view of what can be accomplished and what should be accomplished, which will in the mid-term certainly enhance US national security. And Saleh’s departure will, in the longer term, undoubtedly improve the quality of life in Yemen.

Regarding the reports of the $35 million in military aid slated in the US annual budget, if they don’t pass it now, they can’t go back and request the funds once Saleh is gone. But they can withhold it once its approved. If one of the revolution’s goals is restructuring the military and security forces, then the US needs to have some cash on hand for that purpose.

I am actually pleased, shockingly enough. They just really need to keep a very, very good eye on Ammar, as the US will discover soon that he is as bad as the rest of them. Maybe they know it already and are just short on options.

WaPo: U.S. officials, in turn, express little interest in the insurgency in Yemen and say their counterterrorism efforts are limited to what they describe as a minority within al-Qaeda’s Yemeni affiliate that is focused on U.S. attacks. The officials say they are determined to resist efforts by the government of embattled President Ali Abdullah Saleh to enlist American forces and firepower in a domestic counterinsurgency and draw the United States into Yemen’s internal chaos. (Read on …)

Suicide bomber last seen in Aden jail, placed dead in car?

Filed under: Aden, Yemen, obits, suicide attacks — by Jane Novak at 10:00 pm on Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Heavens to Betsy! Not a false flag suicide attack organized by the Sanaa regime and blamed on al Qaeda… I find it interesting how nearly all westerners will reject the notion and the implications entirely, finding it improbable because it is so repulsive. However, the Sanaa regime is certainly in close enough contact to AQAP through an intermediary, and cold blooded enough to order up a suicide bomber. In fact, Saleh bragged repeatedly after the 2006 escape that he was in touch by phone with all the escapees. Or the intelligence services could do some plot themselves and blame al Qaeda, as many assert has happened previously.

The story at Aden Online comes from Major General Major Ahmed Mansour Alsoumma and is that the suicide bomber in the assassination attempt against General Mohammed Naser Ahmed was arrested in Abyan, jailed in Aden and later placed dead in the car which exploded as Defense Minister Mohamed Naser Ahmed drove by. The Def Min hasn’t commented but one of the security guards said the driver (suicide bomber) seemed slumped and sleeping.

Al Qaeda never claimed responsibility. The state announced the the identity of the bomber very quickly as it is prone to, having the fasted DNA lab in the world. Its the second assassination attempt on the Def Min. Aden Online asserts that there are dozens of young men arrested in jail that are held to become suicide bombers.

Update: Xinua 10/8/11:

Yemen Identifies Suicide Bomber in Attack on DM Convoy
2011-10-09 05:53:30 Xinhua Web Editor: Guo
Yemen’s interior ministry managed on Saturday to identify an al-Qaida suicide bomber, who detonated his explosives-packed vehicle on the passing convoy of Yemeni Defense Minister Maj. Gen. Mohammed Nasser Ahmed, who survived the attack late September in the southern port city of Aden.

The country’s interior ministry quoted a senior security official in Aden province as saying that the 17-year-old buy, who was killed in the blast, identified as the Yemeni national Abdul Rahman Abdu Aziz al-Doarde, an Aden’s native and a member of al- Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).

The investigations revealed that al-Doarde has stayed for two years in Abyan province, some 480 km south of the capital Sanaa and one of AQAP’s key strongholds, where the army forces have been battling the terrorists for more than three months, the ministry said, adding that five suspected al-Qaida members involved in the assassination bid against the defense minister were arrested also in Aden.

There have been several reports like this including one suicide bomber, I think it was in Sayoun 2008, who was arrested as a southern activist. He was a student of medicine and a member of the Southern Movement, and the next time he was located weeks later when the state ID’d him as a suicide bomber. The Yemen Times reported earlier the assassination:

The General Mohamed Naser Ahmed, Yemen’s minister of defense in the care-taker government has escaped an assassination attempt targeted his convoy in Aden on Tuesday by a suicide bomb attack in which the government immediately blamed Al-Qaeda for the attack.

This is the second time in which the defense minister targeted in less than a month. In late August Ahmed’s vehicle was struck by RPG shells while he was on visit with other generals to some military units in Abyan south Yemen where Al-Qaeda took over its capital Zunjbar late May.

The original in Arabic: (Read on …)

Two killed in drone strike in south Yemen

Filed under: Abyan, Air strike, Yemen, obits — by Jane Novak at 6:16 pm on Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Among the week’s dead in Abyan a Pakistani and two Chechans and two civilian anti al-Qaeda activists.

SANAA, Yemen — A U.S. drone strike killed five al-Qaida-linked militants in southern Yemen on Wednesday, Yemeni officials said. (Read on …)

Two more journalists killed in Sanaa regime violence: Yemen

Filed under: Media, Protest Fatalities, Taiz — by Jane Novak at 6:02 pm on Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Five killed since protests began.The media is a favorite Saleh target.

YEMEN – Two more journalists killed in Saleh regime violence

Reporters Without Borders firmly condemns cameraman Abdel Hakim Al-Nour’s death during a military offensive last night in Taiz province and reporter Abdel Majid Al-Samawi’s death in a Sanaa hospital on 3 October from the gunshot wound he received more than a week ago.

Their deaths bring to five the number of journalists who have been killed since February, when protests calling for President Ali Abdallah Saleh’s departure began.

A cameraman and producer for the Mas production company Al-Nour was killed during a bombardment of the city Taiz that caused many causalities. He was also the person responsible for media at the Hayel Saeed Anam Association.

Al-Samawi died in Sanaa Technological Hospital from the neck injury he received when a sniper shot him on 25 September. Born in 1956 in a village in Damar province, he leaves a wife and six children.

The three other journalists killed since the start of the protests are Hassan Al-Wadhaf, a cameraman with Al-Hurra TV, Mohamed Yahia Al-Malayia, a correspondent for the Al-Salam and newspapers, and Jamal Al-Sharabi, a photographer for the independent daily Al-Masdar.

Al-Wadhaf died on 23 September from the injuries he received while covering violence against demonstrators in Sanaa five days earlier. Al-Malayia and Al-Sharabi were among the many fatalities when snipers opened fire on demonstrators in Sanaa on 18 March.

Reporters Without Borders offers its condolences to the families, friends and colleagues of the two latest victims, and holds the Yemeni authorities responsible for their deaths.

The press freedom organization is very disturbed by the increase in violence against civilians since President Saleh’s return on 3 October from Saudi Arabia, where he spent four months recovering from the injuries he received in an attack on the presidential compound.

After night of random shelling, Taiz marches again

Filed under: Civil Unrest, Taiz, Yemen, photos/gifs — by Jane Novak at 2:15 pm on Wednesday, October 5, 2011

My fascination with Yemen was never about the morally bankrupt and corrupt Salah regime but with the people who stood to fight it. The following videos were taken today and show the city’s response to the shelling of residential areas. For more on the violence overnight that killed eight and wounded dozens in Taiz, see my article.


women march

men march

childrens march

Southern Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) for June 2011, Yemen

Filed under: South Yemen, Yemen, reports — by Jane Novak at 10:20 am on Wednesday, October 5, 2011

SOHR’s June report includes updates of activities of the Southern Movement, and its civil and violent repression, fatalities from across the south (warning graphic photos) and the events in (Zinjibar) Abyan, Aden, Lahj, Dhalie etc.

To download in English, click here

For Arabic, click here

Yemen’s National Revolutionary Council denies negotiations underway: Press Release

Filed under: Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 9:20 am on Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Yemen’s National Revolutionary Council denies negotiations underway

Sanaa, Yemen, Oct 5, 2011—Yemen’s National Revolutionary Council denied the veracity of repeated claims by the failing Saleh regime that power transfer talks are ongoing after UN envoy Jamal bin Omar departed Sana’a this week empty handed. (Read on …)

Eight killed in Taiz as state shells residential areas

Filed under: Protest Fatalities, Taiz, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 9:27 pm on Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Listen here

Yemen Post: Government forces attacked youth protesters and civilians in freedom square Taiz Wednesday morning killing at least eight and injuring dozens.

Fire was everywhere near the square and clashes continued in six different fronts in the city.

According to Yasser al-Nusari, a medic in freedom square Taiz, at least 30 civilians were injured in the random attacks of the government. (Read on …)

Revolutionaries are children and thieves: Yahya Saleh

Filed under: Air strike, Biographies, Counter-terror, Post Saleh, Security Forces, USA, War Crimes, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 6:50 pm on Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Yahya Saleh while saying an entirely different thing in Arabic tells Reuters the ruling family is entirely committed to peace: AlertNet:

* Says cash for training and equipment cut, intelligence aid same,

* Says civil war unlikely despite “revolution of children and thieves”

* Calls potential U.N. resolution on transfer plan foreign interference

By Erika Solomon

SANAA, Oct 5 (Reuters) – The United States and other Western donors have cut counter-terrorism aid to Yemen’s army during eight months of mass protests against President Ali Abdullah Saleh, his nephew and leader of a key paramilitary unit said on Wednesday, in effect supporting anti-Saleh groups. (Read on …)

Saleh interview transcript

Filed under: Presidency, Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 6:45 pm on Tuesday, October 4, 2011


Ali Abdullah Saleh, the President of Yemen, can do little to disguise the wounds he suffered in a June attack on his palace, but he has nevertheless decided to grant his first interview with the Western press since returning from medical treatment in Saudi Arabia on Sept. 23. He spoke with TIME’s Aryn Baker and the Washington Post’s Sudarsan Raghavan on Thursday, Sept. 29. (Read on …)

Yemen Youth Revolution urges UN to take seven steps

Filed under: Donors, UN, Protest Fatalities, Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 6:33 pm on Tuesday, October 4, 2011


The Yemeni Youth Popular Revolution urges United Nations to take seven steps

Change Square, Sana’a Yemen, October 4, 2011—The Organizing Committee of the Yemeni Youth Popular Revolution issued an urgent appeal to the United Nations today. The letter outlining seven actions the protesters in Yemen’s nine month revolution is below: (Read on …)

Awlaki trained Farouk, the jet bomber, on how to detonate bomb

Filed under: Yemen, anwar — by Jane Novak at 3:11 pm on Tuesday, October 4, 2011

I thought we knew that a long time ago:

Radical American cleric Anwar al-Awlaki was directly involved in the failed Christmas 2009 plot on a commercial jet and failed October 2010 plot on cargo planes, according to the federal bulletin issued after Awlaki was killed Friday in a U.S. drone attack in Yemen.

The Homeland Security/FBI bulletin, obtained by Fox News, specifically says Awlaki, an influential new-generation figure in Al Qeada, showed the suspected Christmas Day bomber how to detonate the bomb he is accused of hiding in his underwear.

Read more: Fox

Yahya says Saleh won’t sign while protests continue

Filed under: Security Forces, Transition, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 9:43 am on Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Yahya Saleh also makes a range of charges against the protesters. “Accused that al-Qaeda supports the demonstrators and the opposition kills them. Yahya Saleh describes the rebels to «meanness», and the revolution as boring, and stresses that the Gulf initiative conflicts with the Constitution, and that his uncle would not sign it as long as the sit-ins continues.” The realization is dawning in the diplomatic community that Saleh will never sign it and never had any intention of signing.

Yemen Post: In a recent interview with France 24, General Yehia Mohamed Saleh, who is president’s Saleh’s nephew and Head to the Central Security Forces as well as prominent businessman opened up on Yemen’s uprising.

He made clear that as long as protesters would continue to take the streets of Yemen hostage, staging sit-ins and marches, his “uncle” would never agree to step down, let alone negotiate. (Read on …)

Yemen’s random shelling kills 2 shoppers in Sanaa, wounds 3 in Taiz

Filed under: Protest Fatalities, Sana'a, Taiz — by Jane Novak at 9:37 am on Tuesday, October 4, 2011

SANAA — Shells fired into a popular shopping district of Yemen’s capital killed two civilians and wounded another on Tuesday, witnesses and medical officials said. (Read on …)

Awlaki preached against US openly in Yemen, Update: family ID’s body

Filed under: Abyan, Islamic Imirate, Yemen, anwar, shabwa — by Jane Novak at 9:05 am on Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Awlaki moved between Shabwa and Abyan, preached openly, negotiated with a sheikh for AQAP passage through tribal territories (request denied). If Awlaki was with Saed al Shihri, its pretty clear that he was in AQAP, and pretty high up, I cant believe anybody is debating that point. Update: Anwar’s family

Awlaqi moved freely in Yemen’s lawless regions, AFP

ADEN — Long sought-after US-born Al-Qaeda cleric, Anwar al-Awlaqi, who was killed in a US air strike last week, used to move freely around Yemen’s lawless provinces and even preach in mosques, witnesses said.

During the past few months, the radical cleric had moved between the Al-Qaeda hotbed regions of Abyan and Shabwa in the south and Marib in the east, one tribal chief told AFP on condition of anonymity….Awlaqi and AQAP number two, Saeed al-Shehri, escaped death on September 20, when US drones carried out several air strikes on the village of Al-Mahfad in Abyan, the tribal chief said. (Read on …)

Orwellian Yemen

Filed under: Janes Articles — by Jane Novak at 7:47 am on Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Yemen’s Theater of the Absurd: The regime pays al-Qaeda to cause trouble, bringing more international aid to the regime, my article at PJM. Here it is in Arabic at Mareb Press.

Yemenis and the world will not accept Saleh

Filed under: A-analysis, Al-Qaeda, Presidency, state jihaddists — by Jane Novak at 1:27 pm on Monday, October 3, 2011

Yemen’s problem: The president and ‘al-Qaeda’

It is almost certain that the Yemeni government was not serious in fighting al-Qaeda within the past years. But, has Yemen been using al-Qaeda in its political purposes or was the regime afraid of the organization? This worrying questioned would probably remain unanswered. Within the current crisis that President Saleh has been facing, al-Qaeda managed to seize the city of Zinjibar and thus creating the fear that it might imitate what al- Qaeda in Iraq has been doing; namely seizing cities under its control. It took the Yemeni forced 90 days to evacuate the city of Zinjibar from al-Qaeda, with the help of the Americans in breaking the siege of an a Yemeni army battalion. Two weeks later, one of the most important leaders of al-Qaeda in Yemen—the U.S.-born Anwar al-Awlaki—was killed.

Both parts, the government and the opposition, exchange accusations over supporting terrorism. The opposition accuses Saleh that he supports terrorism and that he masterminded the fall of the city of Zinjibar. In the meantime, some government figures claim that al-Qaeda is being protected by opposition., For the Yemeni citizen the problem lies President Saleh’s refusal to step down and his transfer of power to his sons and relatives. For world powers, however, the problem is al-Qaeda.

I think that both are right; al-Qaeda is a problem and so is Saleh. Saleh has been walking on a tight rope and accordingly Yemen remained undeveloped for more than 30 years. He only cared about remaining in power by achieving tribal and regional balance, once with Saddam Hussein, another with Qaddafi and now probably with al-Qaeda when it is time for him to leave. The world will not accept a regime that is rejected domestically and internationally.

(The writer is the General Manager of Al Arabiya. The article was published by the London-based Asharq al-Awsat on Oct. 3, 2011 and was translated from Arabic by Abeer Tayel.)

Yemen Post Saleh to Use Terror File to Stay in Power; World Must not be Tricked

President Saleh has been using the terror card for well over a decade now, almost blackmailing western powers into financing his efforts against al-Qaeda and supporting his regime as he claimed to be the only entity in Yemen able to will enough power to carry through America’s requests in Yemen. (Read on …)

AQAP claims Awlaki alive: Yemen Post

Filed under: Air strike, anwar, aq statements — by Jane Novak at 10:28 am on Monday, October 3, 2011

Hopefully these unsourced statements will prove to be an embarrassment to al Qaeda:

Yemen Post: “As is happens, al-Qaeda in Yemen is now claiming that both al-Awlaki and al-Asiri are still alive and were in fact nowhere near the explosion.”

But there hasn’t been an actual press release, if we can call it that, from AQAP. Supposedly they promised a video of Anwar disputing reports of his death to Xinjua, but there’s been nothing beyond that a few days ago. ( Here’s the summary of the reports of Anwar alive from 11/1.) Maybe the YP has sources. Marib Press says the local population confirmed to the family that Anwar is alive but has nothing from AQAP itself.

The fact that his family was unable to identify Awlaki from among the body parts was unsurprising. His father has my sympathy for that task alone. YP: “Tribal leaders in Jawf told the family that Awlaqi was not killed in the attack. Tribes in the province say there is no proof that Awlaqi was amongst the killed and DNA tests on the remains of the five killed can prove that.”

At the same time, Yemeni muj are confirming on the forums that he is dead. And DOD would never let President Obama make the statement if there was a chance Awlaki was still alive; otherwise, undead terrorists are quite common in Yemen. Al Reimi was announced dead three times and al Quso twice, but none of these were USG statements.

Houthis vs. Islah in al Jawf

Filed under: Islah, Local gov, Saada War, Tribes, al Jawf, political violence — by Jane Novak at 7:10 am on Monday, October 3, 2011

The YT has a good write up of the conflict in al Jawf and comes to the conclusion the Houthis are expansionist.

Yemen Times: Sunni-Shiites war in Al-Jawf

War broke out five months ago between Houthi rebels – who are Shiite Muslims – and the locals of Al-Jawf governorate – themselves Sunni Muslims – 143 km northwest of the capital city of Sana’a.

Around 470 Houthis were killed and over 85 of Al-Jawf’ s citizens lost their lives in this four-month-long war, Sheikh Arfj Bin Hadban, a local tribal leader in Al-Jawf, told the Yemen Times. (Read on …)

Dead al Qaeda worked for National Security

Filed under: Air strike, Security Forces, Yemen's Lies, anwar, obits — by Jane Novak at 7:02 am on Monday, October 3, 2011

A lot of al Qaeda get checks from the intelligence agency. Many of those killed in Abyan also had National Security ID cards. Badr al Hassani said that the PSO deputy paid him to train terrorists in Mareb in karate.

Yemen Times: He explained that one of the dead is from the local A’lmarwan clan in Khashef of Al-Jawf called Salem Saleh Arfaj and the other one is Saleh Mohsen Al-Na’j of the Abida tribe in Mareb, 173 km northeast the capital Sana’a.

“The two people mentioned were easy to identify because we know them, but it was hard to identify the other two since they were not from our area,” he said.

He indicated that one of the killed persons of his area was a well-known Al-Qaeda member among the population.

He described the area where the strike was carried out as “a plain surrounded by five mountains in the desert.”

“The vehicle which was said to be Al-Awlaki’s car was totally torn up into pieces and another car belonging to one of the citizens whose brother was killed in this strike was smashed,” he said.

And while the local relatives of the dead person were picking up the human parts of the dead bodies, they found two national security cards – one for their kinsman and the other for the dead person of Mareb, according to the local source.

“They were really Yemen’s national security agents recruited by Amar Saleh [chief of Yemen’s intelligence service],” he said.

Yemen Air Force bombs soldiers fighting al Qaeda again

Filed under: Abyan, Air strike, Islamic Imirate, Military, state jihaddists — by Jane Novak at 4:21 pm on Sunday, October 2, 2011

For the second time the Sanaa regime has “accidentally” bombed the troops fighting al Qaeda. The last time in early August dozens of the tribal fighters against al Qaeda were killed as well as four military commanders. The tribesmen later said that al Qaeda fighters were lying in wait after the bombing, as if it was coordinated with them. And this time, the al Qaeda fighters were laying in wait again. The Yemen Air Forces is commanded by the half-brother of Saleh, Mohammed Saleh Ahmar. I used to say the Sanaa regime was like John Gotti with an airforce, but now they are more like Zawaheri with an airforce. Update: Sanaa regime denies but multiple news outlets have local sources confirming.

USA Today: The officials said the bombing, which took place on Saturday evening in the southern Abyan province, targeted an abandoned school used as shelter by soldiers of the army’s 119th Brigade. The school is located just east of Abyan’s provincial capital Zinjibar, where militants linked to al-Qaeda have been in control since May.

Heavy fighting has been raging in the area for days as part of the army’s months long campaign to seize back Zinjibar from the militants.

The officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to release the information, said there were unconfirmed reports that militants arrived at the school soon after the airstrike and killed an unspecified number of wounded troops.

The school is in the Bagdar area, along the frontline between Yemeni forces and militants. On Saturday, fighting in Zinjibar killed at least 28 soldiers and militants.

The 119th Brigade has rebelled against the regime of President Ali Abdullah Saleh to join the protest movement demanding his ouster. It is thought to have received significant support from the U.S. military to enable it to fight the militants in the south more efficiently.

(Read on …)

Yemen’s Counter-terror chief randomly shelling residential areas in Arhab: Video

Filed under: Sana'a, Security Forces, War Crimes, political violence — by Jane Novak at 2:36 pm on Sunday, October 2, 2011

Are we really going to continue to place the safety of Americans in Prince Ahmed Saleh’s hands when he randomly murders Yemeni civilians? There must be reliable mid-level CT commanders. The following vid shows damage in Arhab, after extensive shelling by the Republican Guard:

Update: Regime bombing of residential areas kills seven year old.

Houthis expel MSF, think they spread Christianity

Filed under: Medical, Sa'ada — by Jane Novak at 1:42 pm on Sunday, October 2, 2011

The Houthis are irrationally paranoid and conspiracy minded about everything. As you may recall it was the Houthis, not the Islamists of Islah, that strenuously objected to and cancelled the “Together against Terrorism” nation wide march in Yemen for the 9/11 anniversary, pissing me off entirely. If the Houthis had any contact with the outside world, they would know MSF is an apolitical organization of charitable doctors from across the globe that altruistically volunteer their time to help people in need. And in Saada, after years of war, some children have never seen a doctor in their life. The Houthis apparently fail to recall it was MSF volunteers that drove through the state’s random shelling of Dhyan City in order to care for wounded civilians. MSF statement here doesn’t mention threats; al Masdar is also reporting threats on the medical workers. Others say a power struggle between the Houthis and the govt health office.

Yemen Post: A Non-Governmental Organization working in the northern province of Sa’ada announced today that it was suspending its operations after its staff had been attacked by al Houthi Shi’ite group….The organization reported today that it had been the target of al-houthi’s intimidation tactics as the (Houthi) tribe disagreed with its field work.

The MSF which so far has been mainly distributing food and medecine to the region’s most vulnerable has been accused by al-Houthi of really conducting a “Christianization” campaign.

Residents in Sa’ada have confirmed that the organization has been the victim of a hate campaign by the al-Houthi as the group tried to have the NGO shut down.

Religious Decisions For Murder

Filed under: Al-Qaeda, Religious, Yemen, aq statements — by Jane Novak at 12:21 pm on Sunday, October 2, 2011

The article deals with the fatwa on protests and protesters issued by state clerics on Thursday.

Religious Decisions For Murder
a guest post by Amr Mohammed AL Rishia

The meeting was held in capital of Yemen by the so-called Yemen Clerics Association reached a religious decision for killing opponents of President Saleh .

This meeting was held after it was requested by President Saleh using religion against his opponents and demonstrations held in all around Yemen .

Saleh attempt to use the religious side to create chaos inside of revolution in Yemen , president Saleh evasions had Failed to break down legitimacy of the revolution .

That confirms the success of revolution in Yemen , particularly it has managed realign Centers of power in the Yemeni society tribal , military , parties & youth for one purpose is to remove the corrupt regime.

President Saleh no longer has any political plans in order to destroy the revolution, that why he used the religious side. Actually it reveals to international society Saleh’s intentions to lead Yemen to civil war by using religious decisions for murder.

What I saw on TV screens were a group of normal men did not reach to stage of clerics , in any way regarding about clerics qualifications. Where are they standing from the view of religion in the continuing injustice of 33 years? Where are they from stealing the country?, Where are they from killing Yemenis? Where are they from spread of corruption for 33 years?

It is shameful and ridiculous at the same time. Where are they from regarding the constitution which since the twentieth year allows citizens to demonstrate.

Finally, day after day, President Saleh exposes himself and makes others aware of President Saleh who has ruled the nation as great as the Yemeni people, It became clear to the world that this is how Saleh thinks, killing of Yemenis in order to remain as ruler .

Amr Mohammed AL Rishia

اليمن مسرح اللامعقول

Filed under: Yemen, janes articles arabic — by Jane Novak at 11:47 am on Sunday, October 2, 2011

My article at Yemenat, will post the English link shortly.

اليمن مسرح اللامعقول

· كتبت: جين نوفاك- ترجمة خاصة بموقع: “يمنات” الإخباري

أطلق مدير المخابرات المركزية الأمريكية ديفيد بترايوس تحذيراً من أن “تنظيم القاعدة في شبه الجزيرة العربية قد برز كالورم الإقليمي الأكثر خطورة في الجهاد العالمي”. لكن على الرغم من زيادة حرية وصول الولايات المتحدة وضرباتها الجوية هناك، والثناء على تعاون الحكومة اليمنية، فقد واصل تنظيم القاعدة في جزيرة العرب نموه بشكل أقوى.

وما تسقطه تصريحات الحكومة الأمريكية من الذكر هو أن الحكومة اليمنية قد ظلت تربِح إرهابيي القاعدة، وتدربهم، وتوجههم، وتوفر لهم ملاذاً آمناً، وتصدرهم على مدى عقدين من الزمان. فعلى سبيل المثال، قامت بإخلاء سراح 70 من نشطاء القاعدة في شهر مارس، ناهيك عن تنظيمها عمليات هرب أخرى، وعمليات إطلاق مبكرة، وعمليات عفو.

كما أن مسئولي الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية نادرا ما يذكرون أن نظام صنعاء قد ذبح المئات من المتظاهرين اليمنيين وقصف عشرات القرى منذ اندلاع الاحتجاجات في عموم أنحاء البلاد في شهر فبراير. ومن أجل استعادة الاستقرار، أيدت الولايات المتحدة والمملكة العربية السعودية خطة دول مجلس التعاون الخليجي التي توفر الحصانة القضائية للجماعة الحاكمة إذا هي ستقبل تشكيل حكومة وحدة وطنية وإجراء انتخابات مبكرة. وفي الواقع، فإن هذا يدعم بقاء النظام في سدة الحكم على الرغم من المظاهرات الداعية للإطاحة به فوراً.

وعلى الرغم من المظلة الذهبية التي قُدمت له، أقدم الرئيس اليمني علي عبد الله صالح مرارا وتكرارا على نكث التوقيع على مثل هكذا صفقة. ففي شهر مايو، فرض أنصار النظام حصاراً على دبلوماسيين حضروا مراسم التوقيع المزعوم. وبعيد ساعات خلت، قلل السفير الأميركي من الحادث. وفي يوم 19سبتمبر وصل محاورون دوليون إلى صنعاء لإعادة المحاولة لوضع اللمسات الأخيرة على الاتفاق. وفي ذلك اليوم، فتحت قوات الأمن النار على المحتجين، ما أسفر عن مقتل 93 متظاهرا وجرح 700. كما قام قناصة ودبابات بعمليات هجوم في تعز، ثاني أكبر مدينة في اليمن. وحثت وزارة الخارجية “جميع الأطراف” إلى “الامتناع عن الأعمال التي تثير المزيد من العنف”، كما لو أن المتظاهرين العزل كانوا مسئولين إلى حد ما عما حدث.

في خطوة جريئة بشكل مذهل، عاد الرئيس علي عبدالله صالح إلى اليمن في وقت لاحق بعد ثلاثة أشهر قضاها في المنفى في المملكة العربية السعودية، حيث كان يتعافى من جروح أصيب بها في هجوم على القصر الرئاسي. وقال صالح انه جاء بـ: “حمامة سلام” ولكن قوات النظام بدأت بقصف المتظاهرين عند منتصف الليل، كما أطلق قناصة من على أسطح المباني النار على المتظاهرين. وقتل في ذلك اليوم خمسون شخصاً.

إلا أن الولايات المتحدة والمملكة المتحدة وفرنسا والمملكة العربية السعودية ودول مجلس التعاون الخليجي والأمم المتحدة جميعها ناورت مرة أخرى بردة فعل واحدة وهي تأييد خطة دول مجلس التعاون الخليجي ولكن من دون أي انتقاد لصالح. يستخدم النظام تهديد القاعدة لحشد الدعم الدولي لصالح نفسه. وتعتبر قوات مكافحة الإرهاب، التي يرأسها نجل الرئيس صالح وأبناء أخيه، والتي يتم تمويلها وتدريبها وتجهيزها من قبل الولايات المتحدة، تعتبر جزءاً حيويا من دفاعات النظام. ويقول مسئولو أوباما أنه ليس هناك أدلة على أن هناك وحدات خاصة دربتها الولايات المتحدة متواطئة في قتل المتظاهرين.

أسوأ من ذلك، يلعب أقارب الرئيس صالح بشكل مزدوج على المتاجرة بالإرهاب. على سبيل المثال، انسحبت قوات الأمن من مدينة زنجبار في محافظة أبين في شهر مايو، وتركت المكان مفتوحاً لتنظيم القاعدة في جزيرة العرب، والذي استولى على الأسلحة المتروكة، ونهب المدينة، وأعلن إمارة إسلامية هناك. وقاموا بقطع رأس عرًافة مشتبه بها وقطعوا ذراع صبي في ناد (إستاد) مزدحم. وجرى قصف نحو 1500 من رجال القبائل المحليين الذين تكاتفوا معا لمحاربة القاعدة في جزيرة العرب “بطريقة الخطأ” من قبل القوات الجوية اليمنية في شهر يوليو، ما أسفر عن مقتل العشرات.

قال القاضي حمود الهتار، وزير سابق للأوقاف، ورئيس برنامج الحوار البائد في اليمن، الذي عمل على “تقويم” 342 من الإرهابيين المتشددين، قال أنه في الواقع قام نظام صنعاء بتسليم أبين لتنظيم القاعدة في جزيرة العرب من خلال مسئولين أمنيين كبار في النظام، وذلك “لتخويف الغرب، وقمع الثورة اليمنية”.

كتب وزير الخارجية السابق عبد الله الأصنج أن هناك في أبين “عدداً كبيرا من هؤلاء الإرهابيين المزعومين قد اتضح أنهم موجودون في كشف الرواتب التابع لجهاز الأمن القومي. وقد ذكرت عديد من عائلات الإرهابيين المتوفين والمزعومين أن أبنائهم جرى توظيفهم من قبل جهاز الأمن القومي حتى أن بعض العائلات قدمت بطاقات هوية خاصة بجهاز الأمن القومي في لأولئك المتوفين. ”

وكجزء من جهود الوساطة المحلية، شارك الشيخ حسين بن شعيب في النقاش مع كبار قادة تنظيم القاعدة. وقال في وقت لاحق أن مقاتلي القاعدة جرى “زرعهم” في محافظة أبين من قبل صالح “الذي يستخدمهم دائما” في صراعات داخلية، استخدمهم النظام في حرب صيف 1994، والحروب على الحوثيين في صعدة. وليس سرا أن أولئك الذين فجروا السفارة الأميركية في صنعاء في 17 سبتمبر 2009 ، كانوا ضباط في الجيش وأنهم استخدموا سيارة عسكرية واستأجروا مقاتلين من القاعدة، وأعطوهم الزي العسكري. لا يمكن أن يكون نظام صالح موثوقاً في أي شيء. هذا هو سبب كل المشاكل في البلاد “.

Anwar Awlaki not Anwar Awlaki with President Saleh?

Filed under: Yemen, photos — by Jane Novak at 11:06 am on Sunday, October 2, 2011




In 2010 Anwar with Saleh? It wouldn’t be odd since Saleh always defended Awlaki as a “normal preacher” and never asked the tribe to hand him over according its Sheikh. The Sanaa regime did find Awlaki guilty of something in absentia, a few months ago I think it was. I thought the photo wasn’t him when I first saw it, too heavy but he does did look different from the side. it doesn’t really matter anyway I guess.

Other Awlaki death buzz: Anwar Awlaki’s father Nasser joined the rev in March. Ali Mohsen says Anwar got hit because of his father’s disloyalty to Saleh.

Awlaki was on his way to or from a meeting with al Zindani, a state paper says. The ehaddis are whining that Zindani set him up to clear his name with the US.

Sanaa regime in Yemen threatens leading youth activists

Filed under: Civil Rights, Civil Unrest, Security Forces, Targeting, Yemen, reconfigurations — by Jane Novak at 5:09 pm on Saturday, October 1, 2011

More activists are receiving threats over the phone by security personnel of detention if they dont stop their activism.

Traditionally the US allied National Security under Ammar Saleh has perpetrated most attacks on journalists and activists and may have the lead again in personal threats and assault against the democracy activists now.

After Awlaki hit, US wants Saleh out and military to military operations

Filed under: Air strike, Biographies, Counter-terror, Military, USA, Yemen, anwar — by Jane Novak at 2:06 pm on Saturday, October 1, 2011

Mil to mil cooperation going forward is fine, necessary and productive as long as it does not include Saleh’s son Ahmed (Republican Guard) , or three nephews Yahya (Central Security), Tariq (Presidential Guards) and Ammar (National Security) or his half brother Mohammed Saleh Ammar (head of the Air Force). Everything after that is smooth sailing.


A senior American official made it clear on Saturday that Mr. Saleh’s immediate departure remained a goal of American policy, and that Yemen’s government was under no “significant illusion” that the United States had changed its position.

“Sustaining military to military cooperation is in our best interest,” the official added, speaking on condition of anonymity. “We don’t want to undermine that cooperation.”

A Yemeni government spokesman, however, said Mr. Saleh deserved credit for helping the Americans.

“After this big victory in catching Awlaki, the White House calls on the president to leave power immediately?” Deputy Information Minister Abdu al-Janadi said to Reuters. “The Americans don’t even respect those who cooperate with them.”

The spokesman for Yemen’s opposition coalition, Mohammed Qahtan, rejected the idea that Mr. Awlaki’s killing cast the government in a favorable light. Instead, it shows “the regime’s failure and weakness to perform its duty to arrest and try Awlaki in accordance with the Constitution,” Mr. Qahtan said. “And it’s that that forced America to go after him using their own means.”

Call Saleh’s collective punishment in Yemen a crime: letter to UN

Filed under: Donors, UN, Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 12:21 pm on Saturday, October 1, 2011

Mr. / Ban Ki-moon
Secretary-General of the UN

Subject: Crimes by the regime of Ali Saleh against the Yemeni people and youth of the peaceful revolution

To: Members of the UN and the Human Rights Council.

We the Yemeni People ask you to consider the crimes of Ali Abdullah Saleh and his family and his followers imposed on Yemenis as collective punishment. They deprived Yemenis of electricity and cut off roads and prevent people from moving between provinces and cities . Many people have been killed due to the electricity cuts, including those requiring dialysis and other medical patients. Most of hospitals have been forced to stop working due to the lack of electricity and the lack of diesel to operate their generators. The Yemeni government fails to provide any solutions to fix the power and hides information about the reasons behind the electricity blackouts.

The opposition parties and tribal leaders deny any involvement in cutting the electricity and share in the demands of the Yemeni people for a thorough investigation about the reasons behind these cuts.

Saleh and his relative oversee the violence that has killed youth protestors and destroyed the homes of civilians in cities and rural areas, along with other civilian infrastructure. The Sana’a regime abducted young activists, and threatens citizens with more violent crimes using the false legitimacy of a fatwa issued by the pro-regime scholars (ulmas)

As a human beings, we call the world, and we speak to you, in your position of responsibility, seeking your help and support in stopping such crimes, as for more than a week, electricity only comes for less than an hour.

We urge you to form a mission to conduct an international investigation to investigate about these and the many other crimes that violate the rights of Yemeni citizens and the international laws.

by activist Enas Ahmed on behalf of the Yemeni People

Organizing Committee announces 861 protester fatalities and 19,000 wounded

Filed under: Protest Fatalities, Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 12:04 pm on Saturday, October 1, 2011

The Organizing Committee at Change Square in Sana’a announced today 861 pritesters were killed and 19, 926 wounded & injured by Saleh’s forces & thugs in eight months of protest.

The Organizing Committee also called for the UN to institute a weapons embargo on the Sana’a regime.

The Yemeni government announced today 1400 fatalities from Feb-Sept total including protesters, soldiers, police and tribesmen. The figure appears to include those killed by al Qaeda since February.

UN envoy announces dead end in Yemen talks

Filed under: Donors, UN, GCC, Transition, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 11:30 am on Saturday, October 1, 2011

translation via NYR | MasdarOnline | Envoy of the Secretary-General of the United Nations said that the political process seeking to resolve the crisis in Yemen reached a “dead end” but he expressed optimism that Yemenis will find out a solution that guarantee entry in the transitional stage and transfer of power in the country. (Read on …)

Al Qaeda linked sources deny Al Awlaki dead: BBC; AQAP contradictory: Mareb Press

Filed under: Air strike, Yemen, anwar, aq statements — by Jane Novak at 10:31 am on Saturday, October 1, 2011

Update: Mareb Press report on an AlQuds Alarabia report that PM Mujawir is Anwar Awlaki’s uncle and they are from the same tribe, that this is the reason the Sanaa regime failed to take any action against him for years. If true, it also means the Fahd al Quso is Mujawir’s tribesman.

Update 2: AQAP contradictory, it sounds like they don’t know or havent confirmed themselves: Mareb Press The questioning in the killing of al-Awlaki is reinforced by a conflict of information from sources close al Qaeda, where some close to AQ stress he is not dead, while others assert the news of his death (is correct), while it did not issue any official statement from al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula that confirms or denies the news of his death.

Original: Gah! Al Qaeda linked sources tell the BBC that Awlaki is alive and they will produce video to prove it. On one hand, the US said it had definite confirmation and Obama wouldn’t have announced it if there wasn’t. Also there was a witness on the ground, the homeowner. And there was confirmation on one of the forums. On the other hand, the remains were charred and in pieces and his father couldn’t identify him. There’s been so much duplicity from the Sanaa regime on the al Qaeda issue before. However I don’t recall AQAP denying a death that occurred, they are usually more reliable in announcing causalities than Sanaa, which has a habit of announcing kills that weren’t going back to 2004 and Nabi. Likely the BBC’s source is not actual AQAP? Until I see it a reliable Yemeni site that has a statement directly from AQAP, not reprinting the beeb story, then its likely untrue.

BBC, GT: Tribal sources linked to al Qaeda, told the BBC that al-Qaeda in Yemen, Egypt denied the news of killing of Anwar Al-Awlaki, a leading figure in the organization, and vowed to broadcast a video of an interview with Aulaqi prove that he is still alive

But sources close to the father of Anwar al-Awlaki who is a professor at the University of Sanaa, confirmed to the BBC that he went today to the al-Jawf province, eastern Yemen to identify the body of his son, and supervising the burial, if so, then his death.

According to tribal sources is entirely distorted and could not be identified but believed to be Anwar Awlaki.

Similar report at Barakish

Friday pro-democracy protests in Marib, Yemen

Filed under: Marib, Yemen, protests — by Jane Novak at 7:57 am on Saturday, October 1, 2011

The theme of this week’s protest was Victory for Syria and Yemen. The following video shows the protest in Marib, described by some analysts exclusively as a hot bed of terrorism but there’s a lot more going on in Marib that is worth focusing on than the AQAP training camps. The revolutionaries in Yemen are uniformly calling for a civil (non-military and non-theocratic) government that secures equal rights. The only exception is the southern movement which is calling for a civil independent southern state. The problem in Yemen is the historical leaders which revive ancient rivalries and power bases. At the same time, the protesters are forging a national identity in the squares and have nearly become a new tribe with a shared identity, philosophy and goals.

Drone strike gets bomb maker al Asiri too; Update: No?

Filed under: Air strike, Saudi Arabia, TI: External, UPS bombs, Yemen, fahd, prince — by Jane Novak at 4:06 am on Saturday, October 1, 2011

Update: Yemen Officials report he was not killed.

Original: Nice! The death of Ibrahim al Asiri is huge and should quell any whining doubting the threat from Anwar, who in reality was fully operational, focused on the US and associated with numerous plots. Al Asiri was responsible for the bomb in the assassination plot on Saudi Prince Naif, the Nigerian’s underwear bomb, the toner cartridges on the UPS plane, and they were experimenting with poisons including the poison perfume plot and there was the warning about riacin and the castor beans. Bad news dudes all around.

The fact that the Saudi bomb maker al Asiri was in the car with two American al Qaeda jihaddists shows in itself what they were up to. The drone strike likely saved the lives of untold thousands and whether Yemenis believe it or not, saved a lot of misery for the Yemeni people. Also the strike was executed perfectly in that there were no civilians anywhere around.

There has been some confusion that the location of Awlaki’s death (al Jawf en route to Marib) means he wasn’t involved in AQAP (??!! really I read that today) or their occupation of Zinjibar; however, earlier reports indicated the terrorists brought items looted from Abyan residents to Marib to be divided up there, causing tension along regional lines.

Now that they are dead, lets get back to the war of ideas and support representative democracy, equal rights and freedom of the press.

There’s less much grumbling about the strike in Yemen than there is in the US, beyond the expected statement by HOOD. Actually many Yemenis are happy to be free of the burden of Anwar and all are cursing AQAP because of the atrocities the fanatics are committing in Abyan, including executing a suspected witch and another man after a dispute ( link to vid here) and cutting off a teen’s arm for stealing. The boy later died. Over 100,000 fled al Qaeda when they took control of, and looted, the provincial capital Zinjibar and the families are living in schools in Aden since May.

Yesterday’s anti-government protests by millions around Yemen was themed in unity with and support of the Syrian people’s struggle against Assad. A secondary theme was in rejection of the fatwa, requested by President Saleh and delivered by 500 state clerics, that finds public demonstrations against the state and for regime change are illegitimate under Islam. I am quite concerned by the fatwa; through the years, Saleh fatwa’d his opposition before attacking them. Nonetheless I am trying to convince the Yemeni protesters to adopt AC/DC’s Highway to Hell as a theme song.

Saleh continues to dissemble, as he will unto infinity, saying that the protests have to end before the VP can sign the GCC initiative: He pointed out that signing of the Vice President to the initiate depends on the readiness of the other side, adding that the Gulf initiative states to remove the causes of tension as tension elements are known to all and power can not be transferred without implementing this item. Saleh also says General Ali Mohsen and Hamid al Ahmar should leave Yemen before he does. The only bright spot is that Sec. Clinton appears to have moved off the GCC plan to an agreement of principles; nonetheless Saleh has never been motivated to any action by what is in the best interests of the Yemeni people. He only operates in self-interest although not in a rational manner.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Two US officials say the drone strike in Yemen that killed Anward al-Awlaki appears to have also killed al-Qaida’s top Saudi bomb-maker.

Officials say intelligence indicates Ibrahim al-Asiri also died in the attack. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because the death has not been officially confirmed.

Al-Asiri is the bomb-maker believed to have made the explosives used in the foiled Christmas Day airline attack in 2009 and last year’s attempted cargo plane bombing.

Al-Asiri’s death would make the attack perhaps the most successful single drone strike ever.

(HT: Weasel Zippers)

UN HRC betrays Yemeni people: Human Rights Watch

Filed under: Donors, UN, Protest Fatalities, Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 5:07 pm on Friday, September 30, 2011

UN Human Rights Council: Yemen Resolution Falls Far Short
Creation of Expert on Accountability a Step Forward

(Geneva, October 1, 2011) – The United Nations Human Rights Council’s weak response to the rapidly deteriorating human rights situation in Yemen betrays the Yemeni people, Human Rights Watch said today. The Council, whose current session ended on September 30, 2011, adopted a resolution on Yemen that fails to push for either an international investigation into recent abuses or an ongoing human rights monitoring presence in the country.

The tepid resolution reflected efforts to secure Yemen’s support for the measure, and concerns that a “non-consensual” text would not garner a majority vote in the Council, Human Rights Watch said. (Read on …)

Saudis approved and facilitated Saleh’s return?

Filed under: Post Saleh, Saudi Arabia, Transition, Yemen, reconfigurations — by Jane Novak at 3:05 pm on Friday, September 30, 2011

I’m starting to think that claim of three weeks of surveillance is likely propaganda. It would be a typical Saleh move.

CNN: Saleh returns to Yemen as al-Awlaki was killed

But several analysts consulted by CNN said the Saudis were concerned that the growing unrest in Yemen could morph into outright civil war — in a country that shares a long and porous desert border with the kingdom.

The rationale in Riyadh, according to these analysts, was that only Saleh had the guile and stature to pull his country back from the brink, despite his injuries and his array of enemies. And at the same time, Saleh would be best placed to turn up the heat on al Qaeda, now established in at least two eastern provinces and in parts of southern Yemen.

Diplomatic sources in the Gulf say that far from being surprised by Saleh’s return, the Saudi authorities sanctioned and assisted in it, providing a jet that flew him to the southern city of Aden in the early hours of Friday last week. They say Saleh did not fly directly to Sanaa, the capital, because the airport and the route into the city are not reliably under government control. In fact, the capital is now a patchwork of pro- and anti-Saleh enclaves.

A helicopter was waiting at the Aden airport to fly Saleh 200 miles to the presidential palace in Sanaa before dawn. Again, arriving by air was probably preferable to negotiating the chaotic streets of the capital.

Tribesmen down mil aircraft in Arhab

Filed under: Military, Sana'a, Tribes, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 2:49 pm on Friday, September 30, 2011

This is from two days ago and got stuck in drafts. “The routine task” was likely bombing civilian targets. The story is correct though in that the whole thing in Arhab started in march when the tribesmen prevented the Republican Guard from leaving the base to reinforce the state forces in Sanaa following the Sana’a massacre.

SANA, Yemen — Rebel tribesmen in a mountainous region just north of the capital brought down a military aircraft on Wednesday, Yemen’s Defense Ministry said in a statement. (Read on …)

General Nuba of the Southern Mobility calls UN envoy to visit the south

Filed under: Donors, UN, South Yemen, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 2:33 pm on Friday, September 30, 2011

Google translated, the original Arabic below, he says any representatives that UN envoy Jamal bin Omar met in Sanaa or in Cairo or YSP members do not represent the southern movement and he should come to the south to see the situation on the ground and talk to the leaders of the southern movement if he wants to actually solve “the Yemen crisis.”

We read through the media of the activities and meetings of the Envoy of the Secretary General of the United Nations, Jamal Bin Omar on assistance in solving the so-called crisis of Yemen According to the initiative of the Gulf Cooperation Council.

However, we believe that the Gulf initiative did not touch the essence of the so-called Yemen problem, a crisis in the occupation of the south 7-7-1994, which came because of all the These consequences, which means that Astmraha a threat to peace in the region And the whole world because of the important strategic site for the South. (Read on …)

Video: al Qaeda executes man in Jaar after personal dispute

Filed under: Abyan, Al-Qaeda, Islamic Imirate, Yemen, photos/gifs — by Jane Novak at 12:05 pm on Friday, September 30, 2011

Warning: video shows a man getting shot in the head many times:, from the Aden Tomorrow news site

Uploader comment: The killing was not due to the establishment of God’s law, but was because the person who carried out the sentence fought with the man and a group of family members and in clashes with al-Qaeda killed one of them and killed one of his family and then Al Qaeda falsely claimed that it applied the law of God, this is the settlement of political calculation, nothing more to explain

Related: Mukalla Today: al Qaeda releases video explaining the prison break by 67 terrorists from the PSO prison, nice screen grabs.

Anwar al Awlaki killed in al Jawf?

Filed under: Air strike, US jihaddis, Yemen, anwar — by Jane Novak at 6:22 am on Friday, September 30, 2011

This is an interesting article by Steve Emmerson at Investigative Project.

Original: White House and many US officials confirming. I wonder if Samir Khan was with him? If its true, can the US withdraw support for the Sanaa regime now? Who else do we need before we can go to a normal posture toward the country?

Marib Press says witnesses confirm. And “Tribal sources said told AFP that Awlaki was killed early Friday in an air strike on two cars in the province of Marib, east of the country, a stronghold of Al Qaeda in Yemen.” Also News Yemen has independent tribal sources on the scene saying Anwar escaped wounded in the first strike and hit again by a second, the third strike took out the second car and there was another American (Samir). The tribe in the area does not support al Qaeda, and buried the bodies. They found four rifles but are unsure of the number of fatlities. al Masdar A local witness confirms a car was hit and no reports at all of any random civilians, another good thing. But the bodies are so burnt etc that its impossible to identify the remains.

Local (AQ?) sources in Shabwa tell al Watan Awlaki is dead and was turned in by the defected pro-rev general Ali Mohsen al Ahmar who historically is close to al Qaeda to prove to the US that he is strong on CT: al Watan. Obama confirms he’s dead. Awlaki. was seen prior to his death with seven companions.

Update No. Just no.: SANAA, Sep. 30 (Xinhua) –The most-wanted U.S.-born Yemeni al- Qaida cleric, Anwar al-Awlaki, is alive and was not in the targeted convoy hit by a unmanned U.S. drone Friday, one of his brothers told Xinhua by phone. Also Nass Mobile in Yemen just said that Awlaqi was injured but not killed.

Update 2: Report of a report by Yemeni defense ministry Samir Khan was also killed.

Update 3: US reports they were working on a poison gas attack, there were the earlier reports of the poison perfume plot on Saudis and the accumulation of castor beans.

the National: A tribal leader who requested anonymity gave an account of the strike based on information from Khamis Arfaaj, the owner of the house in which Al Awlaki was staying. Mr Khamis, who gave a higher death toll than official sources, said Al Awlaki and six others took their breakfast and moved about 600 metres away from the house. (Read on …)

Friday Protests: Victory for Yemen and Syria

Filed under: Syria, Yemen, protests — by Jane Novak at 6:13 am on Friday, September 30, 2011

and all over the country. from what i gather the Houthis had a problem with this name also, like they objected to the “together against terrorism.” but this time the rest of the country went forward without them. The following is Taiz:

Did US taxpayers buy Ammar Saleh of Yemen’s National Security a $3.4 million house?

Filed under: Security Forces, Tribes, USA, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 6:15 pm on Thursday, September 29, 2011

So we all know that, in between slaughtering protesters, being chief of Yemen’s brutal National Security (this is the organization that perpetrated most attacks on journalists) and his counter-terror duties, Ammar Saleh recently bought a new palatial home in Sanaa and paid cash. As head of the National Security, he is also the recipient of 3.4 million dollars of tribal engagement funds. Did US tax payers buy the murderer a house? Its mind boggling. Since Knights and Sharp are already discussing the tribal engagement fund, I thought I’d throw that out there.

Footnote 12 of Yemen: Background and U.S. Relations prepared by the Congressional Research Service 6/8/11: According to one recent report, the NSB was established to “provide Western intelligence agencies with a more palatable local partner than the Political Security Organization (PSO). The NSB is now responsible for dispensing $3.4 million of U.S.-provided tribal engagement funds to support the campaign against AQAP. See, Michael Knights.

Related: A minor Saleh family tree from the Washington Institute

Lunatic deranged Yemeni dictator tells WaPo Ali Mohsen shoots protesters from behind

Filed under: Presidency, Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 5:32 pm on Thursday, September 29, 2011

Just like al Khaiwani beat himself up in 2007, and “saboteurs in military uniforms” opened fire during the 2005 fuel riots, and a journalist kidnapped himself in 2008 to embarrass the state, and like Ahmed Darwish shot himself inside an Aden prison in 2010, Saleh now says its really the defected military who is killing the protesters:

wapo When asked why government security forces were violently suppressing protesters with heavy machine guns, mortars and snipers, he blamed Mohsen and the Ahmars.

“They are the ones who attack the military bases, the civilians and the protesters — the protesters that are moving around the city with the protection of Ali Mohsen and the Ahmars, using armed people. And they assassinate protesters from behind so they can blame the state,” Saleh said.

It doesn’t matter that there is video. If he says it enough, it becomes true.

Another funny, he’s not stalling on signing the GCC plan: “This is a misunderstanding. We are willing within the next hours and next days to sign it, if the JMP comes closer” to reaching an agreement, Saleh said. “We don’t want to prolong it. And we don’t want this crisis to continue. We want this country to get out of this crisis.”

He says Islah is al Qaeda: “Still, Saleh branded the opposition, especially Islah, Yemen’s largest opposition party, which includes members of the Muslim Brotherhood, as Islamists who support the al-Qaeda-linked militants. JMP officials have denied the allegations….“If Washington is still with the international community in fighting the Taliban and al-Qaeda, who have disturbed the world peace, that will be good. But what we see is that we are pressed by America and the international community to speed up the process of handing over power. And we know where power is going to go. It is going to al-Qaeda, which is directly and completely linked to the Muslim Brotherhood.”

And he’s not going until Ali Mohsen and Hameed al Ahmar do, both have already agreed I believe: Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh declared Thursday that he would not step down as long as his key rivals — a defected general and a billionaire tribal leader and his family — remain in influential positions, throwing a potential wrench into hopes for a peaceful transition of power. Saleh also said the United States was playing a role in assisting Yemeni forces fight off al-Qaeda-linked militants in southern Yemen.

Text of the Fatwa on Yemeni protesters by state clerics

Filed under: Presidency, Religious, Yemen, protest statements, reconfigurations — by Jane Novak at 4:56 pm on Thursday, September 29, 2011

Both the fatwa and the UN HRC council statement will be interpreted by Saleh as a free hand to put down the protests. Saleh followed a similar pattern of obtaining a fatwa prior to launching major assaults on Houthis. The southern independence movement was also fatwa’d if memory serves and of course there was the infamous fatwa issued during the 1994 civil war.Update: also attended by The Commander of the Special Forces Tariq Mohamed Abdullha Saleh

Better: English translation from Yemen Fox:

NYR | YemenFox | A gathering of hundreds of pro-government clerics issued a controversial fatwa backing the regime and lashing out the opposition on Thursday . The clerics labeled the protests that demand the ouster of the regime as “sinful”, calling them to repent or classified as “aggressors”, whom should be fought against according to Islamic law.

After three days of discussion, the clerics issued communiqué clarifying their opinion on the current situation in Yemen.

“Revolting against the {Muslim} rulers either by words or actions is forbidden under the Holy Quran and Sunnah (the teachings of the Prophet). (Read on …)

“Yemen for All” English page

Filed under: Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 4:49 pm on Thursday, September 29, 2011

UN Human Rights Council signs death warrant for Yemeni protesters, will discuss again in 2012

Filed under: Donors, UN, Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 12:54 pm on Thursday, September 29, 2011

The UN Human Rights Commission adopted Yemen’s proposed statement on the violence in Yemen and then asked it to investigate itself, will check back in next year.

President Saleh is going to start bombing cities tomorrow with this weak willed international sanction that doesn’t even name the murderers. What cowards.

I guess naming state security forces as the guilty party would highlight the complicity of the US trained Counter Terror Units and undoubtedly the culpability of their US allied and funded commanders (Saleh’s relatives) in numerous massacres. They have slaughtered nearly 1000 protesters in Yemen and over 10,000 are wounded.

Either Obama officials have no clue about what is actually going on in Yemen, or they think the opposition may become more subverted by al Qaeda than the existing regime. But that’s a theoretical calculation that entirely discounts the millions calling for regime change and a civil (non-military, non-theocratic) government. The undeniable reality is that the Sanaa regime is currently paying al Qaeda and used them to target opponents for two decades.

Its a total disaster and the blow back is going to be a bitch. Its a terrifying situation in that the dictator Saleh is a bloodthirsty lunatic who values nothing beyond staying in power and stealing money. And he’s just been given the green light by the entire world to open fire on unarmed protesters in order to accomplish his goals.

Source: AFP, The UN Human Rights Council Thursday slammed violations in Yemen but did not say if they were committed by troops loyal to embattled President Ali Abdullah Saleh or rival tribesmen and renegade troops.

The resolution, proposed by Yemen itself and adopted by consensus, asked the office of the UN rights chief Navi Pillay to present a progress report on the situation in the country during the next sitting of the council in 2012.

It also noted the Yemeni authorities’ pledge to launch ‘transparent and independent investigations, which will adhere to international standards’ on the alleged abuses. (Read on …)

Yaman News Agency: Facebook English News Service on Facebook for Yemen Rev News

Filed under: Civil Society, Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 2:00 pm on Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Yemen youth revolutionaries daily report English

Filed under: Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 1:52 pm on Wednesday, September 28, 2011

CCYRC Daily Report 9/26: the embed code wasn’t up last time. click on the box next to the font size to view in full screen mode.

Brig. General Mohammed Sawmali, Commander of 25th Mech interview

Filed under: Abyan, Islamic Imirate, Military, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 10:38 am on Wednesday, September 28, 2011

General Sawmali says few local jihaddist are fighting in Abyan, Khalidabdul Nabi is not. Many have come from other governorates and other countries. Some payments made to fight; its a leaderless amorphous group. They confiscated weapons that were left behind by the Public Security, Police, and Central Security after their sudden withdrawal

“I do not want to cross the line and accuse my colleagues of complicity with Al Qaeda” yes that would be a death sentence

“We receive promises from [Southern military commander] Major General Mahdi [Maqwala] that “tomorrow we will be with you” however when tomorrow comes, nobody shows up.”

“All that we have received from the US side was a shipment of food supplies.”

“The Yemeni Navy bombarded some of Al-Qaeda fortifications for one day, but we need much more than this.”

Yemen Fox translates the Asharq Alawasat interview: In his first media interview, Brigadier General Mohammed al-Sawmali, commander of Yemen’s 25th Mechanized Brigade in an interview to Asharq Al-Awsat , from the heart of the Yemeni forces siege of the city of Zanjibar, the capital of Abyan Governorate, this has become an Al Qaeda stronghold. “Yemen fox” republish the interview. Brigadier General Al-Sawmali spoke through telephone about the 25h Mechanized Brigade’s lone mission to eradicate Al Qaeda from Abyan, particularly after Yemeni military units that were previously stationed in the region withdrew, allowing Al Qaeda to gain its foothold there. Al-Sawmali played down claims that the security apparatus purposefully withdrew from the region and allowed Al Qaeda to gain a foothold there as part of a plot to strengthen Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh’s grip on power. The Yemeni General insisted that the 25h Mechanized Brigade would not withdraw from Abyan, even in the face of defeat and death.

The following is the full text of the interview: (Read on …)

Arrest Warrant issued for Ahmed Darwish’s killer, General Kiran

Filed under: Judicial, Security Forces, South Yemen, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 10:07 am on Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Ahmed Darwish was brutally tortured to death in an Aden jail after being randomly arrested. Much later when the revolution broke out, and fatalities in Aden skyrocketed because of violence against civilians, the US called for Kiran, the head of security, to be removed from his post. So the Sanaa regime transferred him to Taiz, where he continues his slaughter.

The public persecution in Aden city – sera district- issued an official letter to the chief prosecutor in the governorate to arrest the former security chief of Aden –who is now the current security chief of Taiz –General Abdullah Giran and generalized the latter to all air, sea and land outlets to arrest him and prevent him from traveling abroad and take him to the public persecution office if found.

General Giran is accused of torturing Ahmed Darwesh a young man till death In Aden city and also accused of killing peaceful protestors in taiz city.

He is also the primary guilty of taiz holocaust.

Saleh asks for fatwa against protesters, Update: Shocka! Zindani says clerics org run by intel officer

Filed under: Presidency, Religious, Yemen, reconfigurations — by Jane Novak at 9:50 am on Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Saleh asks for a fatwa and he’ll probably get it too. Formal fatwas were issued in the 1994 civil war, and repeatedly against the Houthis. In addition Saleh has the capacity to send out talking points to the state Imams to talk up (or taqfir) the excommunication of his enemies, which makes them legitimate targets for death. Several journalists have also been singled out as enemies of Islam by the Yemeni government through the years. Saleh also has distributed talking points to the state’s preachers through the years that were incorporated into Friday sermons, legitimizing, and even encouraging as a duty, the death of both Houthis and Southerners on Islamic grounds.

This is only a small part of what I mean when I say the Sanaa regime legitimizes and perpetuates the al Qaeda philosophy. As the Salafi interpretation of Islam holds that to revolt against a Muslim ruler is haram, even if he is unjust, during the 2006 presidential election, Saleh brought Egyptian Sheikh al Masri (al Maribi), who runs the Dar al Hadeith Salifii school in Marib, to the stage in a rally that was broadcast nationally. Al Masiri issued a fatwa that voting against Saleh is prohibited by Islam. These are the same loyalist group of clerics that threatened a jihad against the US in the event of UN intervention; they are the mouthpiece of Saleh.

Update : Al Zindani says the Scholars Association is run by an intelligence officer, like we didnt know that already, and its suddenly a problem for him although he was a leader within the association for years? He said, “So why hold our ourselves with the Association of Yemen, which is managed in this way, by an officer in the intelligence, it is the door {and help one another in righteousness and piety and do not cooperate in sin and aggression}, and {interpretation of the meaning}”, was the meeting of the scholars of Yemen. Sheikh Zindani, has called for all officers and soldiers to refuse orders that sanction the killing of the Yemenis,

The National: SANAA // Yemen’s president Ali Abdullah Saleh yesterday urged loyal clerics to issue a fatwa against those calling for his removal from power.

In a speech to religious figures, Mr Saleh attempted to build a religious base to confront rivals insisting on his resignation.

“You have to state the ruling of God and His prophet on those who reject the extended hand for peace and dialogue and insist on revolting against constitutional legitimacy,” Mr Saleh said.

He returned last week to Yemen where clashes have been taking place between forces loyal to the president and defected troops protecting the protest camp in Sanaa where anti-government demonstrations have been under way for months.

The three-day conference attended by 500 clerics is expected to issue a statement tomorrow on the turmoil. Several leading clerics have already backed the protesters’ demands and urged Mr Saleh to step down.

Judge Mohammed Al Hajji, the chief of the Yemeni Clerics Association and an ally of Mr Saleh, said that those who refused dialogue with the government were seeking “sedition”. “There is nothing after sedition but chaos, destruction. There is no doubt that those who seek or call for sedition should bear the burden of that,” Mr Al Hajji told delegates.

Yahya Saleh Central Security Camp bombed, no injuries

Filed under: Security Forces, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 9:17 am on Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Who bombed the camp? From al Masdar, take your pick
- the revolutionary military
- soldiers who were unpaid and began protesting last week
- the regime did it itself to blame the opposition

Yahya Saleh holds key roles in Yemen. He is head of the huge and thoroughly corrupt al Maz corp as well as a main Counter-Terror liaison to the US and commander of one of the CT units. He is also commander of the Central Security which has been killing protesters all across the country. Yahya is President Saleh’s nephew and ex-son in law and the head of several civil society organizations including one focused on tourism and the Kannan (sp?) Org, dedicated to financially and morally supporting several “resistance” movements abroad. Yahya opened a mourning tent upon the death of Saddam Hussain and is thought close to several top Baathists exiles in Sanaa who coordinated attacks on US troops from Yemen. Yahya openly praised the Iraqi resistance for causing the deaths of many US troops at a seminar at Sanaa Univ which provided a platform for several of Iraq’s most wanted terrorist facilitators.

MasdarOnline: A violent explosion rocked the Central Security Camp Building on Tuesday evening, located in 70th Street near Presidential Palace, south of Sana’a.

A security source confirmed that the explosion took place inside the headquarters of the Central Security camp without causing any casualties among the soldiers. The source attributed the cause of the explosion was a missile that fell on the ground of the camp that was free of any occurrence of soldiers.

No clear circumstances or any additional information was immediately released about the incident, but sources opposing accused “the remnants of the regime” and said that they aim to say that “Central Security troops are exposed to attacks”.

Soldiers in the Central Security camp, which is led by Saleh’s nephew, Brigadier General, Yahya Mohammed Saleh has declared rebellion inside the camp last Ramadan, protesting against the lack of salary, which made them chant slogans calling to overthrow the regime.

New English langauge Yemen Daily:

Filed under: Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 8:43 am on Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Saleh tricked Saudis and escaped, US unhappy: US diplo

Filed under: Presidency, Saudi Arabia, Transition, USA, Yemen, reconfigurations — by Jane Novak at 8:06 am on Wednesday, September 28, 2011

There is a reason I call him “The lunatic dictator of Yemen,” and “The king of spin”.

Its a difficult story to swallow, and neither the US or SA has a good track record of credibility. Sad to say, there’s just too many times Saleh lied and the Obama administration swore to it.

FT: Yemen’s president appears to have tricked his Saudi hosts when he unexpectedly returned home last week, exacerbating the stand-off between his regime and the country’s pro-democracy protest movement.

According to a senior US official, Ali Abdullah Saleh, who had been undergoing medical treatment in Saudi Arabia, “bolted the kingdom under the pretence of going to the airport for something else”.

Neither the US nor the Saudis were aware of his planned departure, said the official, calling it a “clever, canny” trick by the president. “We are not happy at all.” he added.

Other western officials have also expressed frustration at Mr Saleh’s return to Yemen, with two different versions of his flight circulating in diplomatic circles. One says he told the Saudis he had decided to move to Ethiopia; the other suggests he went to the airport on the pretence of seeing off other Yemeni officials. Saudi officials could not be reached for comment. They have previously described Mr Saleh as a “guest” whose movements were not restricted. A Yemeni government official strongly denied that Mr Saleh had evaded the Saudis at the airport, describing the claim as “baseless”.

Suicide bomber in Aden attacks military convoy, Updated

Filed under: Military, suicide attacks — by Jane Novak at 12:03 pm on Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Some brainwashed teenager pays the price as AQAP tries to burnish its anti-regime credentials as they are being paid by the Saleh family. The perception is so widespread, USS Cole bomber Fahd al Quso had to deny it in an interview, but he’s been Saleh’s boy for a long time, a lot of give and take there.

Mareb Press: Likely another false flag attack, as the explosive was in one of the cars in the convoy, although the regime immediately blamed a suicide bomber of al Qaeda: General al Souma

CBS: (AP) SANAA, Yemen – A suicide attacker driving an explosives-laden car blew himself up Tuesday next to the passing convoy of Yemen’s defense minister, who escaped the attack unharmed, security officials and witnesses said.

The assailant detonated his car as Defense Minister Maj. Gen. Mohammed Nasser Ahmed’s convoy passed by on the coastal highway in the southern city of Aden, witnesses said. The ministry confirmed the attack and said in a statement that Ahmed, who survived another attempt on his life last month that killed two of his bodyguards, was unharmed.

A security official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to brief the media, said at least 10 were wounded in the blast. It was not immediately clear whether senior military officials were among the wounded.

Saleh’s baaaack and the BS snowball starts rolling

Filed under: Presidency, Transition, Yemen, Yemen's Lies, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 10:35 am on Tuesday, September 27, 2011

“Comprehensive Agreement” Within Reach says VP Hadi The next phase of stall tactics begins.

President calls for presidential, parliamentary and local elections Its nearly funny, but lives are at stake. The GPC stalled on the electoral reforms they agreed to after the not free or fair election in 2006, delaying the parliamentary elections scheduled for 2009. The voter rolls are a mess, and Obama’s statement at the UN calling for quick elections is either uniquely uninformed or just plain duplicitous.

King of Peace resumes shelling Arhab villages.

Protesters Committee CCYRC Daily Report 9/26, protesters reject all deals with Saleh, and demand his trial, as is their right since they are his vicitms.

Lie #32,836,

Yemen Post: Only a day after his surprise return to the capital, president Saleh announced through the state news agency that he had ordered his troops to retreat from the streets of the capital, as well as the dismantlement of the many military manned checkpoints. ….Despite the government claims that it had sent out the withdrawal orders, nothing has changed. If anything, there are more Central Security forces out of on the streets, machine guns at the ready.”This is typical Saleh, he says one thing and does the opposite” said a resident in Beit Buss, a popular district of the capital. “In Yemen, nothing is as it seems” he added.

The “dove of peace” line, as soldiers opened fire on the protesters, really should be enough for anyone to catch on.

Mr Democracy can’t stand free speech; its been an ongoing problem:

Yemen: The freedom of opinion and expression still under security attack
ANHRI condemns blocking “Yemen Nation” news website, Cairo, 26 September 2011

The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) condemned today the publicly ongoing repression of the Yemeni authorities against the Freedoms of press and media. Yemeni security forces blocked the independent news website “Yemen Nation” yesterday, without providing any reasons or justifications for this repressive behavior.

It is worth noting that this is the second time for “Yemen Nation” website to be blocked, the first time being last March following the massacre of “Friday of Dignity” in Al-Taghyeer square, in front of San’a University.

Freedom of expression in Yemen is seriously deteriorating since the public protests and demonstrations began last February, demanding ousting the regime of president Ali Abdullah Saleh, who has been dominating the country for over 33 years. However, all border chick points changed into a machine for confiscating newspapers and preventing its distribution. Simultaneously, news websites are not in a better condition, for many of these websites were blocked and hacked.

“The repressive practices of the Yemeni authorities such as: confiscation, blocking, targeting journalist and media professionals will lead to nowhere and will not kill the dream of freedom of the Yemeni people” said ANHRI

“The Yemeni regime is still not aware that it is facing a public movement and is still behaving the same old way which is based on repression, suppression and confiscation of freedoms” ANHRI added

Saleh meets with Salafi clerics and asks for fatwa against protesters. Lately official TV channels have aired a number of shows with Salafi clerics who are asking people to side with Saleh. Yemen Tribune. YAATC: Saleh said in at the “scientific conference of the Association of Yemen, “opponents have conduct inconsistent with our religion of the Islamic Sharia, which has made ​​the sanctity of Muslim blood, more privacy and provided to ward off evil to bring the interests and there is no evil greater than the payment the country into civil war, destroy crops and cattle and eat everything and everybody.”

Its an Orwellian nightmare

UNITED NATIONS—Yemen’s foreign minister says the opposition movement’s refusal to accept the results of the 2006 presidential elections are to blame for the country’s current crisis—one that could escalate into a civil war.
Abu Bakr al-Qirbi also told the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday that President Ali Abdullah Saleh is committed to a U.S.-backed Gulf Cooperation Council initiative as a means to ending the crisis in the beleaguered nation that has left hundreds dead.

Al-Qirbi says Saleh’s government is committed to democracy and reform, but the opposition has co-opted the youth-driven protests as a way of trying to oust Saleh after he won a resounding victory in the 2006 elections.

A bright spot, women protest


Filed under: Janes Articles, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 6:41 am on Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Yemen’s theater of the absurd
Imagine this nightmare scenario—the Yemeni government is murdering protesters but paying al Qaeda, while the Obama administration stalls the Yemeni revolution in order to lob drones.

With the death of Osama bin Laden and other successes against al Qaeda in Afghanistan, all eyes are on Yemen. As CIA chief David Patraeus said,. “Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, or AQAP, has emerged as the most dangerous regional node in the global jihad.”

Obama officials continually highlight the AQAP threat, along with Yemen’s increased counter-terror cooperation. But despite increased US access and air strikes, AQAP has grown stronger, larger and more complex.

US statements about Yemen uniformly fail to mention that the Sanaa regime has been paying, hiding, training, directing and exporting al Qaeda terrorists for two decades. In fact, the state freed 70 al Qaeda operatives in March, continuing an expansive pattern of al Qaeda escapes, early releases, rehabilitation and pardons.

US officials also rarely mention that since nation-wide protests erupted in February, the Sana’a regime slaughtered hundreds of Yemeni protesters and bombed dozens of villages and residences.

In order to restore “stability,” the US and Saudi Arabia endorse the Gulf Cooperation Council’s (GCC) plan, which offers the ruling mafia prosecutorial immunity, a unity government and early elections, securing the regime’s continuity as mass demonstrations call for its ouster.

Despite the golden parachute, President Ali Abdullah Saleh repeatedly reneged on signing. In May, regime supporters besieged diplomats gathering for the signing ceremony. Freed hours later, the US ambassador downplayed the incident.

On September 19th as international interlocutors arrived in Sanaa to try again finalize the agreement, security forces opened fire, killing ninety three protesters and injuring 700. Snipers and tanks also attacked in Taiz, Yemen’s second largest city. The State Department urged “all parties” to “refrain from actions that provoke further violence,” as if the unarmed protesters were somehow responsible.

In a stunningly audacious move, President Saleh returned to Yemen days later following a three month exile in Saudi Arabia, where he was recovering from injuries sustained in a bombing. Ever magnanimous, Saleh said he came with “a dove of peace.” Regime forces began shelling the protesters at midnight as snipers lined the roofs. Fifty were killed in a day.

The US, UK, France, Saudi Arabia, the GCC and UN all squeaked something, without naming Saleh or proposing punitive action, and again endorsed the GCC plan. Clearly the lunatic tyrant is buying time, hoping to bomb the protesters into submission, while blackmailing the west with the violence and the threat of al Qaeda.

To Yemenis, Obama’s policy thwarting authentic regime change becomes more repugnant with every massacre it excuses. And while the US sacrifices its legitimacy on human rights and democracy on the altar of counter-terrorism, the Saleh regime continues to play a double game.

Saleh’s son and nephews head the intelligence and security services which contain the CT units, and have received substantial US counter-terror funding, equipment and training. Obama officials say there is no evidence that specific US trained CT units are complicit in protester murders, but these commanders surely are.

And worse, like Pakistan’s ISI, Saleh’s relatives operate on both sides of the terrorism fence.

For example, security forces withdrew from Zinjibar,City in Abyan in May. AQAP seized abandoned weapons, looted the city, and declared an Islamic Emirate. The fanatics beheaded a suspected witch and chopped off a boys arm in a crowed stadium. About 1500 local tribesmen banded together to fight AQAP and were “accidentally” bombed by the Yemeni air force in July, killing dozens.

Judge Hamoud al Hittar is formerly the Minister of Endowments and head of Yemen’s defunct dialog program that “reformed” 342 hardened terrorists. He said that in reality the Sana’a regime is paying AQAP in Abyan “to frighten the West, and to suppress the Yemeni revolution.” Al Hittar said the long standing payments run through top security officials.

Former Foreign Minister Abdullah al Asnag wrote that in Abyan, “A substantial number of these supposed terrorists have turned out to be on the payroll of the National Security Agency. Many families of the deceased and supposed terrorists have reported that their sons were employed by the National Security Agency and some families even presented NSA ID Cards belonging to the deceased.”

As part of a local mediation effort, Sheik Hussain bin Shuaib engaged top al Qaeda commanders. He later said Qaeda fighters were “planted” in Abyan by the Saleh “who always uses them” in internal conflicts, “The regime used them in the summer 94 war and used them in wars on the Houthis in Saada. It is no secret that those who blew up the U.S. embassy in Sana’a on September 17, 2009, were military officers and they used a military vehicle and hired al Qaeda fighters, giving them military uniforms. The Saleh regime is not to be trusted on anything. It is the cause of all problems of the country.”

The Sana’a regime is the cause and the target of the Yemeni Youth Revolution, as centers of vast corruption, inherited privilege and brutality. By 2009, the ruling family had committed enough overt mass atrocities to be brought before the ICC. Here in 2011, continued US appeasement of, and alliance with, these terrorist enablers comes at the expense of 22 million Yemenis demanding regime change, a civil government and democracy.

A poem to Obama read from Yemen’s Change Square

Filed under: Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 6:26 am on Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Thank you for not having lost all your memory yet
But, your ambassador in Sanaa
Still chews Qaat greedily in Ahmed Ali’s divan
You consider us more closely, the African-American noble
Meanwhile Gerald Frankstein believes that
We do not deserve to live
And it is easy to be shot by snipers
So, Obama
We are not Indians
But we have a dream
And we are changemakers
You always should not forget that
The weapons which kill us are American-made and shipping
Our friend, Obama! Shame on you!
Also, We would like to inform you that
A homeland in Ali Salah’s existence is another Guantanamo.

9/22/11 Change Square Sanaa

Interview with Sheikh Hussain al Shuaib, mediator to AQAP

Filed under: Abyan, Islamic Imirate, Tribes, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 11:13 pm on Monday, September 26, 2011

via email, this is an excerpt that deals with tribal mediation efforts last month in Abyan with top AQAP leaders. Sheikh Hussain is one of the local dignitaries that attempted to convince al Qaeda to lay down their arms and withdraw. Another section regarding evolving concepts of jihad, US counter-terror tactics and other related topics will be published later.

Q4: I learned from XXX you have contributed in mediation between the al-Qaeda, which controls parts of the south, and the tribes. Can you explain to us what kind of mediation and what resulted?

A4: Yes, I mediated after some tribal and other notables asked me, including some leaders of the ruling party in the province of Abyan. I responded to the request and was accepted in the tribes in the city claiming in the province of Abyan. Despite all the good that I do, our efforts are still ongoing, and the most important thing for us is to convince the young al-Qaeda to withdraw from the provincial capital of Zanzibar and return the situation as before, then arrange the return of the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs). Our efforts are underway and there were some obstacles, the most important of which is that there are parties in the State and others that struggle to serve its interests and the achievement of its objectives, but there is no shortage of God’s solution.

Q5: There is a lot of talk that some of the devices of the Saleh regime are in favor of al-Qaeda taking control of some areas of the south. Are you able to confirm that?

A5: The role of the leaders of the brigades of the Saleh regime in Abyan and Aden was clearly evident on what happened and is happening in Zanzibar, the capital of Abyan province. The city was handed over entirely to al-Qaeda. Security pulled out of the military forces that were stationed there, including the central security. The sudden withdrawal from the city sparked surprise among all observers.

The modern Yemeni street and the south know of the existence of a conspiracy by the Saleh regime to deliver Abyan into the situation as it is now. We are accustomed to such policies from the Saleh regime which uses and always used al Qaeda fighters in any internal conflict between him and his opponents. The regime used them in the summer 94 and used them in wars on the Houthis in Saada. It is no secret that those who blew up the U.S. embassy in Sanaa on 17 \ 9 \ 2009, were some military officers and they used a military vehicle and hired al Qaeda fighters giving them military uniforms. The Saleh regime is not to be trusted on anything, it is the cause of all problems of the country.

I think that the situation worsened for Ali Saleh when he learned that the southern movement has almost complete control of the province of Abyan, after control of Lahj, and the young Qaeda fighters were planted there by Saleh, as it is known that Abyan province is representing the South.

Q6: What is your view of the U.S. role in combating terrorism in Yemen?

A6: I welcome the U.S. role in the fight against terrorism through dialogue and scientific discussion rather than violence and military intervention. As I said before, violence only begets more violence, we welcome that any role of the U.S. put an end to violence and terrorism and that is peaceful.

Most Yemenis believe that AQAP operates as an arm of the Yemeni intelligence and security services. There are substantial indications of the relationship. With the revolution in full swing, defectors are starting to come forward with details.

Judge Hamoud al Hittar is the head of Yemen’s now defunct Koranic Dialog Committee that “rehabilitated” 342 hardened al Qaeda operatives. A former Minster of Endowments, al Hittar said recently that the Saleh regime is “supporting a number of al Qaeda members in Abyan to frighten the West, and to suppress the Yemeni revolution.”

Judge Hamoud Al Hittar said many of the top al Qaeda members who he met during dialog sessions are, “dealing with the Yemeni regime and receiving financial rewards.” A well established system of communication and payments to al Qaeda militants is headed by three security officials, “one in a Presidential Guards, the second in the National Security and the third in the Interior Ministry.” (The Central Security forces are within the Interior Ministry and contain one of the counter-terror units.) In essence, the same counter-terror commanders the US is relying on for its national security are paying al Qaeda to engage in violence, foster insecurity and heighten the US’s threat perception.

Former Foreign Minister Abdullah al Asnag wrote in June about the conflict in Abyan, “Although the government has declared the dead as terrorists, a substantial number of these supposed terrorists have turned out to be on the payroll of the National Security Agency (headed by Ammar Saleh). Many families of the deceased and supposed terrorists have reported that their sons were employed by the National Security Agency and some families even presented NSA ID Cards belonging to the deceased.”

Over 100,000 Yemeni civilians have fled the violence in Abyan, and are sheltering in schools in Aden. A military brigade that refused to surrender to the terrorists was left stranded by the Defense Ministry and under assault by al Qaeda for two months without reinforcements or food. The US ultimately resupplied them by air. About 1500 local tribesmen came together to fight alongside the besieged unit against al Qaeda, and in late July, the Yemeni air force “accidentally” bombed the tribesmen, killing dozens.

Video: protesters turn out after Saleh’s return to demand the end of the regime

Filed under: Sana'a, Yemen, photos/gifs, protests — by Jane Novak at 8:09 pm on Monday, September 26, 2011

Saleh rarely varies his routine, it was the same pattern with the Southern Movement and the Saada War as it is now: lies, propaganda, empty promises, fake dialog, violence which he blames on the victims and then he accuses everybody of being al Qaeda. Saleh said in 2004, “Democracy is the rescue ship of all regimes,” and then he cracked down on the media. Every statement, I mean every statement on all topics, since then has been propaganda. The Saada War broke out six times because the regime kept violating its own cease fire terms. There’s not one promise he’s kept, including not running for office in 2006, for the third time (1993, 1999 & 2006.) Just like reneging on the GCC plan four times and all his BS about supporting US CT ops and goals.

Taipei Times: The president has repeatedly refused to sign a power transfer deal brokered by the Gulf Cooperation Council according to which he would hand power to Yemeni Vice President Abdrabuh Mansur Hadi in return for immunity from prosecution. However, he said on Sunday he had authorized Hadi to sign the deal on his behalf. (Read on …)

Tribes seize RG base, protesters demand Saleh’s trial, Saleh lies more

Filed under: Military, Security Forces, Tribes, Yemen, reconfigurations — by Jane Novak at 8:03 pm on Monday, September 26, 2011

Lightly armed tribal fighters seize 40 tanks from the “elite” RG. The protesters will throw Saleh out again if that’s what it takes, but the idea bringing him and his relatives to trial in Yemen is really starting to fill the imagination. And Saleh lied in a speech about being willing to transfer power but he literally hasn’t told the truth in a decade, so its not worth posting or even reading. (The Regime’s social media strategy: lie, liable and infiltrate

VOA Forces loyal to a Yemeni tribal leader have captured a presidential guard base north of the capital Sana’a, as forces loyal to President Ali Abdallah Saleh appear to be suffering a slow erosion. (Read on …)

The Saudi Arab News: Saleh is the problem

Filed under: Presidency, Saudi Arabia, Transition, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 7:43 pm on Monday, September 26, 2011

whoa, thats it. it would be lovely if this is an official position as well

President should know he can no longer be part of the solution to the problem

Yemen is burning all over again. Protesters in Sanaa are preparing for a long, messy revolt. Opposition held mass protests yesterday, escalating demands for the immediate departure of President Ali Abdullah Saleh. Earlier, a general was killed and 30 other troops loyal to Saleh were taken hostage when tribesmen overnight attacked their base north of Sanaa.

The world community, Arabs in particular, expected Saleh to learn from his mistakes and make a fresh start to bring peace and stability to his wounded and long-suffering nation. Clearly though the Yemeni leader seems to have learned no lessons from his own experience or the developments in the neighborhood. All attempts and appeals by the Arab and GCC leadership to make him see reason have so far fallen on deaf ears. Addicted to unlimited power of the past four decades and hubris that comes with it, he remains singularly blind to the havoc his intransigence has wreaked on Yemen and its people. He says his future should be determined at the ballot box.

When Saleh left Yemen after being grievously injured in an attack on the presidential palace in June, people had burst out on the streets in spontaneous jubilations celebrating his departure. Alas, their rejoicing proved premature. They are stuck with someone who genuinely seems to believe he’s indispensable. Nobody expected Saleh to return to Yemen after those unprecedented celebrations on the day of his departure. If he had any love for his people, Yemen wouldn’t be in the mess it finds itself in today. And now with this military crackdown led by his son and use of mortar and heavy weaponry against peaceful protesters, he has crossed all limits. Totally unarmed civilians including women and children are getting killed by their own troops. Not even young people squatting in the Change Square and singing national anthem are spared.

What will it take to persuade a ruler that his time is up? How many innocents have to die before the world community decides enough is enough? Today, the demand for Saleh’s departure is no longer the demand of the Yemeni people alone. All Arab, Muslim and Western countries have been urging him to leave immediately. The Gulf Cooperation Council has come up with at least three initiatives to resolve the crisis. In fact, a peace accord brokered by Gulf states offering him a dignified exit and a fresh start for Yemen has been ready for months. Saleh twice came close to inking it but opted out at the last minute. He simply refuses to see that he cannot be part of a solution. He is the problem.

Clearly, the world community needs to take some bold and effective steps — and fast — to break this impasse in Yemen and bring the much-needed reprieve to its people. The silence and inaction of the international community only emboldens the discredited regime in Sanaa. The United States must stop treating Saleh with kid gloves. Unfortunately, it has been more concerned with the “war on terror,” building its military bases and expanding drone attacks and military campaign against Al-Qaeda. But the longer the world remains silent over the brutality of regimes like that of Yemen and Syria, the more innocents are killed. Silence kills — literally.

Yemen’s Coordinating Council of the Youth Rev daily report 9/25

Filed under: Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 7:33 pm on Monday, September 26, 2011

CCYRC Daily report English sept 25 2011 – Yemen

arabic link:

40 protesters killed in Yemen Saturday

Filed under: Protest Fatalities, Sana'a, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 10:16 am on Sunday, September 25, 2011

The US has taken no punitive action for eight months as the Sanaa regime slaughtered hundreds of protesters because “counter-terror cooperation has never been better.” However al Qaeda has only grown stronger, the streets bloodier and the nation hungrier, with the international community’s appeasement of Saleh et al.

al Sahwa:
SANAA, Yemen, Sept. 24 (UPI) — Government forces killed at least 40 protesters in Sanaa Saturday, the day after Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh returned from Saudi Arabia, activists said.

Voice of America reported the deaths occurred as Saleh’s military forces clashed with student protesters. The U.S. network said government troops inflicted many casualties when they fired live ammunition and mortar shells at a protesters’ encampment overnight.
(Read on …)

Al Qaeda warlords cut off boys arm for stealing in Jaar, Yemen

Filed under: Abyan, Islamic Imirate, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 9:08 am on Sunday, September 25, 2011

Coupled with Fahd al Quso’s interview, its is abundantly clear that the Obama administration policy had failed on all fronts in Yemen. The solution, as trite as it may sound, is to take a principled stand. If the current plan is to let Saleh hang on until the US has had a chance to drone all the al Qaeda leaders, it will certainly fail because AQAP has infiltrated the security and military and the regime has an incentive to keep the group strong.

AJE: Al-Qaeda linked militants severed the hand of a 15-year-old boy after he stole electrical cables in a southern Yemeni town, witnesses who had been summoned to watch the punishment said Sunday.

The militants cut off the boy’s hand with a sword in front of dozens of residents of Jaar, in the troubled southern province of Abyan, on Saturday evening before taking the limb around town for all to see.

An AFP correspondent spoke to four witnesses at the scene who confirmed the incident took place. They all requested anonymity due to fears of reprisals from militants.

The witnesses said the militants announced they would also cut off another man’s hand later on Sunday. He too had been caught stealing electrical cables, they said.

Deranged dictator continues slaughter in Yemen: photos

Filed under: photos/gifs — by Jane Novak at 8:53 am on Sunday, September 25, 2011

all the week’s brutality at one link, Warning: EXTREMELY GRAPHIC, click here.

al Quso interview

Filed under: Yemen, fahd — by Jane Novak at 10:12 pm on Saturday, September 24, 2011

Fahd tweaks western fears by expressing support for the rev

Interview with Sheikh Fahad al Quso discernible al-Qaeda leaders in Yemen, tells the details of the battle in Zanzibar

Sheikh Fahad Bowl III Regulations required the U.S.: Yemeni tribes did not turn against us, and Saudi Arabia’s position of the revolution shameful Mujahid bin Laden and died a martyr … And ‘base’ part of the fabric of society

Interview by Gamal Abdul Razak

Bowl interview, Sheikh Al-Qaeda leaders

We had to cut a long distance through the bumpy mountain road to reach the region selected by the required third in the American Bowl Sheikh Fahad to conduct an interview with him. (Read on …)

Sanaa regime still attacking medical workers, Red Cross objects

Filed under: Civil Unrest, Diplomacy, Donors, UN, Medical, Protest Fatalities, Targeting, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 5:42 pm on Saturday, September 24, 2011

Yemen Post: As Yemen is living through its worst spell of violence since the beginning of its popular uprising, with several hundred casualties awaiting medical treatment, the Red Cross is accusing the Yemeni government of theft and abuses.

According to Valerie Petitpierre, the deputy head of the International Committee of the Red Cross’s delegation in Yemen, government forces would have physically assaulted some of her staff as they were trying to confiscate their medical supplies.

“The ICRC delegation is receiving very worrying reports of armed confrontations taking place in Al-Gomhori Hospital and placing many innocent lives at risk,” she said.

Eye witnesses within the hospitals confirmed the allegations, saying that several members of the Red Cross staffs had been beaten and threatened of further reprisals if they insisted in helping the wounded.

Petitpierre went further in her declaration mentioning that “in some cases they have had equipment confiscated, and there have also been incidents in which they were denied access to people in need of first aid.”

She stressed that it was the government’s moral duty to ensure and facilitate medical treatment to all, beyond prejudice or feelings of revenge. “Anyone injured or wounded must be able to receive life-saving health care without undue delay.”

Urgent Appeal By Yemeni Protesters to the International Community

Filed under: Yemen, protest statements — by Jane Novak at 11:45 am on Saturday, September 24, 2011

Five years of negotiations between Yemen and Nexen stall

Filed under: Corruption, Oil, Yemen, govt budget — by Jane Novak at 10:26 am on Saturday, September 24, 2011

CH: Anti-government protests in Yemen are complicating Nexen’s efforts to renew its licence for the country’s Masila oilfield.

Nexen may lose its licence for Yemen’s Masila oilfield to a local operator, officials in Yemen said, as the Canadian company’s efforts to renew the deal are hindered by political turmoil and the government’s urgent need for cash. (Read on …)

Cross Talk: Yemen’s Limbo

Filed under: USA, Yemen, photos/gifs, protests — by Jane Novak at 7:58 am on Saturday, September 24, 2011

Taped just prior to Saleh’s return but covers many issues well.

Houthis incapable of not chanting against the US

Filed under: Sa'ada, Saada War, USA, Yemen, protests — by Jane Novak at 10:11 pm on Friday, September 23, 2011

Houthis statement – Saada 23/09/2011 Tazahria mass demonstration was the morning of this day, Friday, 24 / October / 1432 e roamed the streets (Saada), attended by tens of thousands of people of the province who have flocked to it since early morning. In the march chanted the masses (you rebel you are free, America, behind the scenes) (Say to the silent or Nam, will participate in crime) (whatever is spilled or kill, any initiative would not accept) (forward ahead of the change, and God is our best advocate) (Felthna spirit of the martyr , he lived the life of the new). Presented during the demonstration a number of rhetorical words and paragraphs of poetry and Message Board.

Saleh in Yemen calls for cease fire and then shells protesters, Update: deploys al Qaeda or just a scare tactic?

Filed under: Islamic Imirate, Protest Fatalities, Sana'a, Yemen — by Jane Novak at 11:50 am on Friday, September 23, 2011

As expected. CNN reports a dozen deaths since midnight. Its going to be a long bloody night and week.

Unfortunately the Libya option is among the few remaining to safeguard millions, ie- downing the Yemeni Air Force, including the new Hueys. As Saleh refused to resign with immunity and a palace, four times, it is abundantly clear that negotiations are not going to work. Maybe its time for all those symbolic steps the US and international community failed to take until now, but its late for symbolism, half measures and statements.

Al Qaeda suicide bombers moving?

The following could be outright regime propaganda, and maybe al Fahdli never said it, I’m looking for the interview. (Here the report at the Yemen Observer the regime’s stooge paper that sometimes publishes real news.) If al Fahdli did say it, then there’s likely some real al Qaeda movement toward the capital, unless he is back in the pro-regime camp. If its true, its another despicable plot by Saleh. There’s only a remote chance the AQAP moved without approval by somebody. We must recall the long history of very good relations between Saleh and Zawaheri. But this story smells like a typical diversionary tale by Saleh to distract from the carnage. Frankly, AQAP is not that stupid, sending 50 suicide bombers to Sanaa would be the death knell for the group.

Al-Qaeda militants sent 300 insurgents to Sana’a so as to fight the regime, said Sheikh Tareq al-Fadhli in an interview with al-Omana newspaper published on Thursday.

Al-Fadhli said that the extremists fighting in Zinjubar dispatched over three hundred of their insurgents including 50 suicide bombers to Sana’a to teach the son of the president Ahmad Ali, and his nephews Amar and Yahya Mohammed Abdullah Saleh a lesson.

He added that they have developed car bombs named Osama 1, Osama 2, and Osama 3 that carry over a ton and a half of explosives so as to launch a series of [martyrdom operations] in Sana’a in retaliation for bombing what he called the Al-Shabab in Abyan.

Electricity is out in large parts of the capital again, preventing news from getting out.

The Saudis should clarify if they are supporting (and re-arming) Saleh or if they kicked him out after he refused to sign.

Lessons learned as Saleh returns to Yemen

Filed under: Presidency, Transition, Yemen, protest statements, protests — by Jane Novak at 10:55 am on Friday, September 23, 2011

What are the lessons learned since June when Saleh left until today when he returned to Sanaa, and how can those lessons lead to a new and more effective strategy? These must be the question of the day, as opposed to: What the hell just happened? Saleh’s return may trigger either violent confrontations or appeasement. His return may ultimately have a positive effect but its going to be tense.

The Youth Revolution:

1- Democracy is not about free speech; it is about designating representatives, not leaders, and holding them accountable.

2- Strength results from organization not numbers, or maybe, numbers are strengthened by organization

3- Statements in Arabic will neverr be translated into English and published by the western media; they have to be issued in English.The US MSM will reprint wire stories, never investigating or disputing basic assumptions.

4- Western nations’ first and overwhelming concern in Yemen is al Qaeda; whether or not you believe al Qaeda exists independently of Saleh, they do.

5- The Southern Movement is not just going to fade away

6- Unity within the revolution arises from accepting diversity and endorsing full equal rights for the weakest; authoritarian muscle tactics are what triggered the rev in the first place

7- Protest marches are a step but not the only step; the Southern Movement marched from May 2007 through January 2011 when protests began in the capital without a broader strategy

The US

1- Saleh will never willingly resign but will pretend to agree time and time again

2- Saleh will play the al Qaeda card and mobilize his jihaddist minions when challenged

3- Saleh will never act in the best interests of the nation, only in his own and the regime’s interest

4- Saleh is as batsheet crazy as Qaddafi and similarly believes in his own lies and majesty

5- Saleh is mercurial, and whatever his position today, it will change tomorrow, accompanied by an entirely contradictory propaganda package.

While the Yemeni youth can be excused their learning curve after 30 years of dictatorship, the US should have know all this from day one.

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