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The Facts As They Are
Sa’ada Rallies Repeat "the people want the fall of the regime"
Experience of Children’s Parliament in Yemen
Tariq al-Fadhli Speaks on the Yemeni Protest Movement
SUNDAY , Feb 27 , 2011 I ISSUE 34 PRICE : YER 30 WWW . NAT IONALYEMEN. COM
Can the Security Forces Deal with Aden Wisely?
Supporters of the president bow in prayer on Friday around Tahrir Square; photo by Fuad al-Harazi
Two Injured in Radfan Clash Key tribes Abandon Yemen president By Abdulmalik Al-Asaar The citizens Bakri Saleh Fadl and Hamad Mahmoud were injured in violent clashes between armed Southern Movement and the military sector stationed in west of al-Habilayn, Lahj governorate last Thursday. Sources reported to the National Yemen that many houses close to the sector were damaged as well as the two floors of Radfan’s public hospital by the random bombing of the military forces of
By Hammoud Mounassar the whole city. They also added that the army used all varieties of weapons against the armed group who shot a member of the military when he attempted to enter the sector with a medium truck to move his family living next to the sector to outside al-Habilayn Clashes occur daily between armed Southern Movement and army in the area, resulting often in the wounding of innocent victims.
Detention of al-Qaeda leader and the murder of two soldiers in Yemen Mohammed Abdalaleem /Exclusive A clash took place at a checkpoint in Marib in the east of Yemen which resulted in the death of two and the injury of five people suspected to be members of al-Qaeda. Meanwhile, local source reported the detention by security forces of Mohammed Abdullah Ma’wadah, a relative of the Yemeni--
American preacher Anwar al-Awlaki. Some media and official resources have warned amid current unrest that al-Qaeda and other armed militant groups will pose a grave threat to the security of the country should the regime fall, as demanded by the protestors.
SANAA — Pressure on Ali Abdullah Saleh to resign intensiﬁed on Saturday when the leaders of two of Yemen's most important tribes abandoned the president and joined the anti-regime movement. The news came as an ofﬁcial denied reports that police killed four people on Friday in an assault on an anti-government protest in Aden, blaming a southern secessionist group for the attack. Powerful tribal leaders, including those of the Hashid and Baqil, pledged to join protests against Saleh at a gathering
north of the capital, a tribal source told AFP. "I have announced my resignation from the General People's Congress in protest at the repression of peaceful demonstrators in Sanaa, Taez and Aden," Hashid tribal chief Sheikh Hussein bin Abdullah al-Ahmar was quoted as saying, in reference to the ruling party. The Hashids are considered Yemen's most powerful tribal confederation and include nine clans, among them the Sanhan, long a bulwark of Saleh's regime. The announcement was warmly
received by a large crowd of tribesmen, including members of Yemen's second largest tribe, the Baqil, who gathered for the meeting, according to the tribal source. The two tribes announced they would support the popular uprising against Saleh, who has refused to step down after three decades in power, to chants of "the people want the fall of the regime!" According to an AFP tally based on reports by medics and witnesses, at least 19 people have now been killed in almost daily clashes at anti-regime
protests since they erupted on February 16. Medics said security forces used live ammunition on a demonstration in the southern city of Aden, which has seen the worst violence, bringing the death toll to four on Saturday from just one rally with 40 others wounded. They identiﬁed three of the dead as demonstrator Mohammed Ahmed Saleh, 17; Hael Walid, 21, and Salem Bashaj, an employee at the state electricity company who was shot Continued on Page (3)
Demonstrations in Shabwa, Hadramawt Demand Fall of Yemeni Government Shabwa – Hadramawt Exclusive Al-Saeed and al-Rawdah directorates in Shabwa have witnessed demonstrations in which hundreds of protestors gathered from many directorates and reiterated several slogans demanding the departure of president Saleh’s regime. In the Eastern Hadramawt province, for the first time in
Tarim’s modern history “The capital of Islamic culture 2010,” which is also considered to be a peaceful region for many decades, demonstrations also took place where hundreds of angry protestors went out around Tarim last Tuesday. They demanded the overthrow of the regime and
headed to a stage of a rally annually held that was organized by ministry of culture and under the auspices of president Saleh, but the event appeared to be overtaken by the unrest. The demonstrations interrupted the festival on its second day, just as it was supposed to continue for three
more days. Protestors also removed pictures of the president from the streets. Security forces shot at the crowds in order to disperse them, but apparently unable, so the military was brought from nearby Seiyun which succeeded in separating them and arresting some of their ranks.
Sunday, Feb. 27, 2011 Issue 34 www.nationalyemen.com
National Yemen Disappointing Results of NGO’s
Poverty, lack of good education, proper health and corruption are only a few of the key issues that many international organizations have tried to address as they attempt to help Yemen in overcoming its problems The efforts are noble, but their efforts such as in addressing anti-corruption have in some ways only increased corruption within our government as well as in their very own organizations. Many organizations and directors claim that in order to effectively implement projects, they must "pay to play" in order to implement their projects. I understand that these 'fees' organizations pay allows them to bring in much needed dollars every year. But, we have to look critically at how this money is spent because if we look closely enough, I am certain that they operate with 10% efficiency at best. The lack of efficiency may not be classified as corruption in a traditional sense, i.e. stealing money, but in my opinion it is still corruption and we as Yemenis should be furious. These inefficiencies, or acts of corruption manifest in multi-million dollar projects that pay for exorbitant staff salaries, conferences, holidays and over-priced
Hadda restaurants and luxurious villas for their comfort. More concerning, it is not surprising that an executive at an NGO a brief contract in work. In an effort to shore up their lack of knowledge, they lean on highly paid consultants even less sensitive to Yemeni needs to fill in their gaps. Only after short conversations does it make one understand more about their standards and policies that will never fit nor work in Yemen. As a result, it is no surprise that the millions of dollars that are spent rarely - if ever - reaches the Yemeni individual. Even when money does reach Yemeni's through contracts with local businesses, large organizations do not share the wealth. In an effort of laziness, organizations play favorites and award the same contracts to the same businesses and national organizations. This constrains growth for other start up organizations and only enriches a privileged few - a concept all too common in Yemen. With this in mind, National Yemen will create a series of articles in upcoming issues that will profile specific development agencies. We will bring to light the mismanagement of the multi-million dollar funds in these development agencies. It is our intention to bring to expose why projects failed and the money lost. We must make sure that when a project fails it is not met with comments of "well, at least we spent the money." If we are able to this, we will hold these organizations to account to the Yemeni people, and not just to failed governments
Continued From Page (1) outside his home. A hospital ofﬁcial in Aden told AFP that a fourth protester died of wounds sustained in the gunﬁre, which came after Saleh said he had ordered his forces to protect both proand anti-government demonstrators. Residents of Aden described the Friday night incident as a scene from the frontlines of all-out war. "Our neighbourhood has witnessed real scenes of war waged by forces of the Republican Guard, who have been targeting our innocent young who want to protest peacefully," one resident told AFP. News of 17-year-old Saleh's death sparked a wave of anger in neighbourhoods across Aden, where residents attacked police stations and set ﬁre to a police car, an AFP correspondent said Aden remained tense on Saturday, an AFP correspondent said, as a handful of families searched for missing relatives whom they believed were
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arrested. A Yemeni ofﬁcial, however, denied reports of a police raid. "An armed separatist group loyal to the so-called Hirak (Southern Movement) randomly opened ﬁre with automatic weaponry on buildings in the district of Maalla, targeting security forces and citizens," the defence ministry's 26sep.net website quoted the security ofﬁcial as saying. President Saleh has stubbornly refused to resign, but said he will not seek re-election in 2013 and promised political reforms. A Friday demonstration, dubbed "the beginning of the end" of Saleh's regime which swept to power in 1978, saw 100,000 Yemenis turn out across the country, organisers said. Proand anti-government demonstrators have also clashed in recent days, with Saleh loyalists locking horns with militants from the Southern Movement in the country's south. courtesy AFP
Fakhri Hassan Al-Arashi Publisher & Chief Editor
Noah Browning Deputy Editor
Sunday, Feb. 27, 2011 Issue 34 www.nationalyemen.com
Hundreds Students in Mukalla Demand Fall of Yemeni Government Mukalla / Exclusive On Wednesday hundreds students from various schools in Mukalla took part in one of the biggest protests in the country calling for the
overthrow of the regime. Protestors started to gather from the early morning in large numbers walking on Mukalla streets reiterating
security forces shot live ammunition and used tear gas to disperse them. Four protestors were arrested, among them political activists.
slogans of overthrowing the regime and releasing political detainees. They headed to Mukalla security directorate where
Yemeni Teachers Begin Protest The Yemeni republic has witnessed huge crowds of teachers protesting to demand the government to implement the unimplemented provisions of wages and salaries law. Thousands of teachers gathered in front of Sana’a district building and various demands. These include Payment of allowances and adjustments suspended since 2005 and raising funds for degree-holders and supervisors and stop illegal deductions. A committee formed by protestors met the secretary capital Abdulrahman Alakwa’ who promised to meet their demands and to refer them to the relevant authorities. Fuad Dahabah, head of the teachers union, mentioned that he has scrapped a previous offer issued by ministry of education which included promises of improving teachers’ situation.
“We don’t believe in these concessions, and the authorities have failed to meet our demands for six years and is not going to achieve it in six days,” he added. Dahabah also said that teacher’s demands are legitimate and warned the government not to manipulate them by their false promises, and that they are not going to stop their protests until we get our rights In Shabwa also, hundreds of teachers and education personnel protested in front of the Shabwa directorate ofﬁce in a protest organized by Shabwa’s teachers union. Teachers were demanding the payment of their dues, reiterating slogans like “Oh teacher swalk walk, you are the tool of change, where is appreciation and justice, when prices get higher and higher.” Ahmed Fareed head of the teachers union in Shabwa, delivered a speech before the
huge crowd was joined by Naser Meqlem ,who came up with a ﬁnal statement that included • Implementing the wages and salary law no (43) • Payment of allowances and adjustments suspended since 2005 • Addressing the imbalances that still persist within the structure of the promised new wages
• Payment for one full year of work that was deducted from the Ministry of Finance, Granting supervisors, administrators and staff their rights and alternatives. • Protesters conﬁrmed their adherence to their rights and are continuing their rallies till they get their rights. Security forces were spread all over the protest square.
Yemeni Authorities Three Explosions Regain Facilities in Al-Dalea from Southern Activists By Saleh Almansoub
Abdulmalik Alassar /lahj Local sources in Yehr, Lahj reported that security forces have regained control on the security directorate building which Southern Movement elements stormed yesterday amid demonstrations in a number of Lahj directorates in the South of Yemen The commander of the security directorate stated that they had taken back the building with the help of sheikhs and notables from the region, confirming that the security directorate management started practicing its daily work with no losses incurred.
Demonstrators from the southern movement burned the local council building in al-Hawtah directorate after a split from the opposition demonstration demanding overthrowing the regime, while southern movement elements called for secession. The southern movement also penetrated the local council building and looted many of its contents, including computers, and burned all offices located in the first floor, while security forces reportedly had orders not to clash with the demonstrators.
A witness heard a loud explosion next to the Political Security building in al-Jalilah area, Al-Dalea governorate at a distance of 5 km from the directorate capital. Military sourcse reported that a large explosion was heard and that almost certainly Southern Moevement elements were behind the attempt to blow the building. The source didn’t state any losses or injuries. Yet he pointed out that the security forces had begun an investigation. Another explosion was also heard last Tuesday at midnight in Sanah area next
to governmental buildings. Local sources mentioned that the explosion was the result of rocket-propelled grenades and mortar bombs targeting the governmental complex. The explosions caused damage to the offices, but no injuries were reported. Eyewitnesses reported that there was an extensive exchange of gunfire, followed by explosions, which could have been the work of the soldiers in the complex. The government complex, which houses many armored vehicles and security force personnel, was subjected several times to missile fire.
Thousands in Lahj Call for Fall of Regime, Not Separation Abdulmalik Alassar / Lahj The Yemeni street, especially in the South, has witnessed a unity of demands and slogans calling for in the fall of the regime. But in Lahj, this call has replaced the old ones for separation and independence Mohammed Al-Asaadi Editorial Consultant
of southern countries. Thousands of citizens in Lahj’s capital al-Hawta came out after Friday prayer in a huge peaceful demonstration which has never been witnessed before, raising slogans calling for overthrow-
Fuad Al-Qadhi Business Editor
Shukri Hussein Abyan Correspondent
ing the regime. The protests didn’t result in any incidents, as protestors formed committees and groups to secure the protests and to unite slogans. Participants confirmed that their demands are for the fall
Jihan Anwar Staff Journalist
of the regime and that there is no space for other calls of separation or for any party agendas. The protestors called for citizens of Lahj governorate to join the peaceful protests.
Naila Bamehriz Translator & Coordinator
The Facts As They Are
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Sunday, Feb. 27, 2011 Issue 34 www.nationalyemen.com
Thousands March Against Sa’ada Rallies Repeat Yemeni Government In Saada "the people want the fall of the regime" Twenty kilometers outside of Sa’ada city in Yemen’s restive North, thousands of local citizens, among them many
partisans of the armed Houthi What follows is an ofﬁcial rebel group, gathered calling for declaration of their demands the end of the current govern- delivered at the rally, signed ment in Sanaa. “The sons of Saada.”
In the name of God the Merciful the Compassionate, Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds and peace and blessings be upon His Prophet and Messengers, upon Muhammad and his pure family. To all those proud ones who refuse humiliation and submission, to every conscience which loves freedom, pride and dignity, to every human being weakened by poor living conditions and dictatorship, to all vulnerable lives at the mercy of arrogant tyrants, to every person that belongs to beloved Yemen, whether at home or abroad, as
Yemeni people of all groups and political parties and organizations and across the spectrum of different political and popular movements, take action to change this reality and remove this authority. Eject the corrupt regime with utmost haste. Do not lag and delay. Second: We afﬁrm our solidarity with our brothers from among the Yemeni people and our support of independents who angrily demand the end of the system from the University of Sana'a and all Yemeni provinces with one goal and shout for the fall of the regime.
President or subordinate, to a party or a citizen of a large or small, male or female, to all groups in the political spectrum, party and media at home and abroad, we, the people of Saada as an integral part of this people give our support and stand in full solidarity with our free people and emphasize the following demands: First: we appeal to all the free
Third: The people of the province of Saada strongly condemn and denounce the criminal methods practiced by the authority to respond to the protesters in all governorates of Yemen, which is not a surprise given what this government has unleashed on this land of honor, as they have opened the land, sea, and air for foreigners to kill and shed the blood of the
Yemeni people. Fourth: We call on international organizations and local human rights and humanitarian to move quickly to deter criminals and thugs from going too far in the murder and crime and rights violations and disregard for the blood of Yemenis. Fifth: We offer a message to the corrupt regime and this criminal authority, end your rule of more than thirty years, which has exposed the people to such injustice and corruption, and has oppressed the country with injustice. You are the ones who are stealing its wealth, spilling the blood of its sons, throwing into prisons thousands of Yemen’s free sons, transgressing against the people – whom you sold to foreigners – and exposing their blood to our enemies. Sixth: We say to the authority and to the criminal and corrupt regime, leave, along with your crimes and your corruption and your injustice; let people manage their affairs and rebuild what you've destroyed. Know that there is no choice for you except to leave, and your staying will only increase your meanness and lowliness. In Tunisia and Egypt there’s a clear lesson that your hour is nigh. Seventh: We declare that we will continue our peaceful demonstrations until the overthrow of the regime and its total departure. We call on all members of the Yemeni people to go out in peaceful marches and rallies this Friday, God willing, and we call upon all members of the Yemeni people to take action, as well as their effective and broad participation in these demonstrations. May peace and God's mercy and blessings be upon you.
National Yemen Staff “The people want the fall of the regime’’ this quotation joins all the parties in Yemen in ways they have never been united before. It is a diminished demand for the "disengagement" in the South of Yemen for the "overthrow the regime," which was afﬁliated beneath many of the supporters of the southern movement "Hirak" to mobilize the "Houthi group" in the north of Yemen in large rallies bearing the same title. The same has been the case in Sana'a, Aden, Taiz, Ibb, Hodeidah , al-Baidha, and other provinces. Sadaa governorate, which was the scene of a brutal war over the previous six years, joined up a week ago with the peaceful protest marches demanding the departure of the system, based on the conﬁrmation of the leader of the Houthi group there to take to the streets and demand to change the regime through peaceful way. Abdul Malik Al-Houthi, the leader of armed Northern militant group, said earlier this month, during the mass celebration of the birthday of the Prophet Mohammad, "The Yemeni people are to take advantage of the opportunity at the present time to move hard with conscientious responsibility to change their reality and remove the current authority." He added, "We are at the front of our people ready to do our part as part of a mass popular move-
ment. Otherwise, the longer the current authority exists, the people will suffer more and more injustice and tyranny.” On Monday, tens of thousands marched through the streets of Dhahyan North of Sa'ada city, capital city of the province. It was clear that supporters of Houthi and his loyalists are the ones who started the demonstration, noted eyewitnesses. One attendee said, without hiding his opposition to the intellectual premises of the Houthi group, "I, together with some of my fellows, joined the Houthis’ protest march,” noting the absence of armed manifestations and the presence of only a few individuals to provide protection. He added that many demonstrators traveled from the various districts surrounding Dahyan, such as Majz, Sahar, Bagem, Al-Safra, Menbah, and Sadaa city. The slogan "the people want to overthrow the regime" was repeated by all the demonstrators, but the Houthi ideology emerged in the kind of slogans branding the authority as an agent of America and Israel. A statement, signed "the sons of the province of Saada" issued by the Houthi loyalists, stated that the various popular movements and tribal in Saada participated in the demonstration. But several observers conﬁrmed that the control of the Houthis remains strong over most of the
directorates of the province. According to sources close to the Houthi leader, it appears as if the march was originally planned for the city of Saada, the restive governorate’s capital. But the venue of the march ﬁnally changed due to fear of clashes that might occur with a member of the Parliament, Sheikh Othman Magali, who had been in the truce agreement between triba; elements and Houthi militants only since two weeks. In the meantime, the other march was led by Sheikh Faris Manna, President of the "peace conference," which moved from his residence in "Al-Talh," a district on the northern of Sadaa City. But the demonstration stopped after only a few kilometers because of the lack of participants, who were estimated between three hundred to four hundred people, mostly students from schools, reported eyewitnesses. According to some sources close to the Sheikh Manna, who had recently been banned from traveling to Saudi Arabia, he intended fo the march, which bore the slogan "the people want to overthrow the regime" to deliver a message to the authority that he had a great following in the province of Saada. But based on some sources, he failed to deliver the message, and showed his inability to play any effective anti-government role.
Sunday, Feb. 27, 2011 Issue 34 www.nationalyemen.com
Experience of Children’s Parliament in Yemen “Children’s parliament is a platform from which we can advocate for our rights as children” Sharuq Al-Anisi, a member of the Children Parliament expresses. By Fatima Al-Ajel Falemail@example.com She was conﬁdent when asking the ofﬁcial representatives about the role of the government in improving the health situation of children in Yemen. She supported her questions with statistics to show the real situation of children in Yemen. Sharuq Al-Anisi, a 14-year old from Saana, is a member of the Children’s Parliament for the period 20102012 and represents the orphan children in the parliament. She participates regularly in the meetings of the Children Parliament and most recently in the fourth periodic session held from 14th to 16th February 2011. The session was about the health and nutrition situation of children in Yemen. All the parliament members were very interested and keen in raising this issue with all the relevant agencies. “It is our role to make it a serious issue for the authorities to protect children from infectious diseases, as well as drugs and expired food,” Sharuq explained in the session. Sharuq’s new experience with Children Parliament Since she joined the Children’s Parliament in 2010, Sharuq decided to start raising awareness on different issues related to children from her school and community. She has great talent as an actress and singer and uses her
talent as a tool for advocacy. “A Ban on Early Marriage is one of the main issues I will advocate for. Last year, I did orientation sessions for 70 girls in my school on the negative effects of early marriage and now I plan to do more. I will do sketches and songs with the help of my friends and then hold shows in schools and the community,” Sharuq elaborated. Sharuq realizes how far her character has developed throughout the whole of last year, and the new skills and experiences she has learnt.
“Being a member of the Children’s Parliament is an amazing experience. I have become more conﬁdent, people show me respect when they know I am a member of the Children’s Parliament. I really feel empowered and have a role to play in creating change in the situation of children in Yemen.” “During last year and now, I participated in trainings carried out by Democracy School (DS) and Save the Children (SC). Through these trainings I have developed my skills in advocating for the rights of the children in Yemen and learnt about Child Rights and Child Protection. “I feel I am knowledgeable and more informed about problems encountered by the children in Yemen.” Sharuq elaborated. Child Rights to Protection and Early Marriage: In 2009, the focus of the children’s parliament was on child protection from sexual abuse speciﬁcally on the issue of early marriage. Endemic cultural practices such as early marriage and attitudes towards girls faced with sexual abuse and exploitation undermines the protection of children. The practice of early marriage is common amongst majority of the rural populations; affecting girls as young as 10-years old.
There is currently no legal minimum age of marriage in Yemen. The draft law only stipulates that girls should not marry unless they have reached sexual maturity. Recent legislation in 2008 has taken out a minimum age for marriage and the Yemen Parliament has adopted a minimum age of 17 years for girls but this has been challenged by some hardliners. It was difﬁcult for Sharuq at the beginning as there were many people who tried to stop her discussion about this issue,
but she believes that early marriage is the cause of many problems affecting children lives in Yemen. “When a girl marries and gets a baby in early age, her child will most likely have poor health and will suffer from malnutrition and it will be difﬁcult for the young mother to care and look after her child. “So if the minimum age for marriage is legislated to 18, girls will be mature enough to look after and raise their children hence improving the general wellbeing of Yemeni children. “I decided to continue lobbying for the minimum age for marriage to be 18 and I started within my school and community but I have to go out and make it every ones interest in all of Yemen with continued support from Democracy School and Save the Children.” Children’s Yemen
The Children’s Parliament has been in existence since the year 2000. This Parliament has been supported by the Democratic School (DS) since 2002. The Parliament has had 5 elections held every two years and organized by the DS. Parliament members are elected through elections which follow democratic processes in accordance with Yemeni election laws. Um Kalthum Al-Shami, the Children Parliament Coordinator expresses how the parliament functions as a platform for advocacy for all Yemeni children. “Through the election of one member from each governorate including children with disabilities, marginalized groups and orphans, all children in Yemen are represented.” The parliament meets regularly with the government departments and NGOs working in Yemen through the children’s parliamentary sessions when they call on government and NGOs to raise issues related to children rights. SC has been supporting the Children’s Parliament over the years with funding from different donors mainly through capacity building activities, and by organizing parliamentarians’ visits to meet children in difﬁcult circumstances, as well as helping them to run awareness raising campaigns across Yemen. In 2008, the Parliament developed an alternative report on the situation of children in Yemen which was later presented to the public. In 2010, the Parliament was supported in carrying out a national campaign on the dangers of early marriage to the life and health of girls. Similarly the parliamentarians had visited the camp for internally displaced people (IDP) in Sa’ada, Amran, and Haradh to learn about the issues that IDP children are facing in the northern governorates of Yemen. Abdullah Al-Khamisi, the CRC and Civil Society Specialist at Save the Children is working to promote child participation in Yemen while also technically supporting the
Children Parliament which is relatively innovative in Yemen and the MENA region.” Children's Parliament is the national venue for children to voice up their views on issues faced by children in Yemen, as well as working for the promotion and protection of children’s rights.
Endemic cultural practices such as early marriage and attitudes towards girls faced with sexual abuse and exploitation undermines the protection of children It is one of the few opportunities for children’s voices to be heard and through this strengthen children’s participation to effectively advocate for their rights with a focus on Participation, which is one of the basic principles of United Nations Convention for the Rights of the Children (UNCRC). Since 2010 Save the
Children helped Children’s Parliament to increase its membership from 38 to 50 children. To make it a body that represents Yemeni children from all sections including (boys, girls, working children, orphans, children with disabilities, and children from minorities). “All governorates are represented in the parliament; there are 48% girls and 52% boys, as well as the participation of 6 very creative children who have physical disabilities, which does not limit their right of expression and participation,” Al-Shami added. Child Right issues in the Children’s Parliament Every year, the children’s parliament has speciﬁc child right issues to advocate for related to the situation of children in Yemen and this is through awareness campaigns, meetings with the government and NGOs, mass media and ﬁeld visits to different areas in Yemen where children are facing serious violation of their rights. Health and Nutrition is the main issue for discussion in 2011. The ﬁrst session on this was concluded on 16th February 2011with key recommendations to the government and related agencies to implement and follow up. “The role of government is to develop a national plan on tackling Malnutrition and involve children in awareness raising activities especially via TV and Radio.”
The children’s parliament recommends that the Ministry of Health should put more emphasis and focus on children who live in dire circumstances, including the children affected by the armed conﬂicts, children in care centers. There should be coordination with Ministry of Education to incorporate nutrition and health information in the curriculum, develop and strengthen the role of school health and nutrition programs and the importance of breastfeeding. In addition, the recommendations call for the Ministry of Finance to allocate more funds for food and nutrition programs. “This is part of the ‘Every One’ Save the Children global Campaign which aims to reduce child mortality by two thirds by the year 2015 and save the lives of almost six million children each year.” Al-Khamisi explained. During 2010, one of the main focus of the children’s parliament was on inclusive education through a speciﬁc session on this issue which was discussed with decisions makers and related stakeholders. The session recommendations put forward by the Children Parliament on inclusive education has also been endorsed by the President of Yemen, who has issued directives to the Ministry of Education to take these into action to allow children from minorities and disadvantaged sections to attend government run schools.
Sunday, Feb. 27, 2011 Issue 34 www.nationalyemen.com
Tariq al-Fadhli Speaks on the Yemeni Protest Movement • For many reasons, I burned the American ﬂag and disowned Hirak leaders. • The Friday “day of rage” will continue to become Friday Liberation • Ali Abdullah Saleh will fall, as Hosni Mubarak and Ben Ali
fell • This is a secret I did not say it before – ask the leaders of the movement why I refused the honor Charter they submitted • I sacriﬁced all the privileges I had before and have chosen to be a citizen in the public sphere
By Shukri Hossein, NY Exclusive Q / Two years passed since your joining of the Southern movement, or “Hirak.” How do you see its progress today? * It is great and goes ahead. This happened with thanks to God first and then the free Southern people who reject injustice, and they are certainly more optimistic than before. The Egyptian revolution and before it the Tunisian inspires us to victory and liberation from occupation forces’ control of the South today. Q / This means that the Hirak is at the stage that you wish? * Of course! We feel close to achieving all the hopes of the people in terms of liberation of the South’s land and building a modern state. We will continue, taking our strength and resolve from the will of our people despite the intimidations and plots planned by the occupation authorities. This only strengthens the determination of the South’s people in order to achieve victory. Q / I see you speak self confidently despite the rift between you and the South’s people? Yes, even if our confidence has been shaken in
ourselves, still our hearts beat with love for the South. Q / Do you feel that you are still part of the movement? * The truth is that no one can stop me, as I am part of the people of the South which is heavy with wounds and pain. The Hirak movement is a popular movement of all people and not limited at all to personalities. Therefore nobody can do the role of the other, despite the desperate, sick attempts to bring the movement closer to the joint meeting parties, but they have been revealed and their attempts failed. Q / Whose attempts? Could you please make this clear? * The coming days will expose their bad aims and the movement will continue despite the conspiracy. I repeat we depend on youth to achieve victory. We have recently taken part in a “Friday of Anger” and will be followed by “Friday of Endurance” and then there will be “Friday of Liberty.” For your information, I wish that security forces came out to the streets of Zinjibar so we could humble them as they humbled our people, but they avoided contact with us every time.
Q / I understand from your words that you are ready for armed confrontation? * No, I do not mean this, but just as the Egyptian and Tunisian peoples with peaceful confrontation, we will be like them and we will use all the available tools. The security forces are weak and there is no need to face them with weapons because they are misled and work for Ali Abdullah Saleh. As the Tunisian people dislocated Ben Ali and the Egyptian people removed Hosni Mubarak, God willing, our people will be able to bring down the regime of Ali Abdullah Saleh, who has been holding down two peoples and two states, North and South for more than 33 years. Q / Back to my question: Do you still see yourself as part of the movement? * Yes I am part of the popular movement which is far from the bodies, organizations, and parties. Q / But many people believe that Sheikh Tariq has charted by himself an approach which differs from the Hirak movement’s approach, especially after the signature of the truce with the Authority in February last year? * No, This statement is not
true. The Hirak movement is acting peacefully since its first appearance, and as long as the Hirak has been operating, it has renounced violence and fighting. I am pleased with the truce in order to preserve the spirit of movement and in order to avoid armed confrontation.
“The truth is that no one can stop me, as I am part of the people of the South which is heavy with wounds and pain”
You and others can see clearly the occupation that is occurring here, based on seeing the army and the police which are surrounding the city from all directions and surrounding my house too. Unless we sought a logical and reasonable path at that time, a big disaster would have happened and turned the city into a bloodbath, and in that day the martyr Ali Saleh Al-Haddi was killed when troops attacked his home brutally – then we chose to maintain a peaceful movement.
Q / In your last statement, you charge leading figures of the movement with various excesses and wrongdoing What are the reasons for that? * They aren’t offences, but it is the mentality and spirit that doesn’t serve the young people eager for their future, who are making sacrifices after the sacrifices. It is necessary to change the past habits. People today dismiss those people in power who have money, and we are unfortunately required to submit to old dinosaurs who have humbled our people in
the South and they raise slogans for a day of "reconciliation and tolerance" which does not reflect our situation. Q / The principles of reconciliation and tolerance has been received by the community as a good idea. Why are you against it now? It isn’t reconciliation and tolerance when everybody stalking one another. Do not be surprised I tell you now that when I call somebody, they say, “I am the President of the Republic” and Ali Nasser also says, “I am the President of the Republic, Haidar Al-Attas says, “I am the Prime Minister and so on.” They are not able to waive around their illustrious status and mingle with the people and mingle with them at the same time. Personally, I gave up all privileges and titles and I accepted to be a citizen with the people of the South in the field. So, I say no to leaders after today, because it has brought us into confusion and splits. If you look at their meetings you will find they didn’t depart from narrow loyalties and therefore the South is over Tareq al-Fadhli and above all leaderships and all personalities. In Egypt, the July Revolution fell down and became a revolution of January 25 as a new revolution with new life. But [our leaders] are still as they were, living in illusions of the past and so I got very angry because they have wasted our country, our youth, our identity, our religion and Arabism. The issue of the South will remain and those people will disappear. Q / Does the fragmentation of the Hirak benefit the movement? No, we must be inspired by the lesson of Egypt's Revolution where in Tahrir Square, where people of all sects met
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and threw off all the dinosaurs and the idols. Egypt's youth is looking forward to the future of the homeland and this is what we have in the coming days because we're betting on young people and their aspirations and we have recently undertaken another step in the way of peaceful struggle through "Facebook," and it has received a great following from all the provinces and other steps are yet to come. I feel optimistic that it is close to the end, but at the same time I feel deeply hopeless towards those who call themselves leaders. Q / We didn’t hear from you in the last meetings of the Hirak leaders. Were you invited? Yes. I was invited by Mr. Hassan Ba'oum, and he told me: "You are still the ViceChairman of Hirak Board,” but I apologized and told him to take the side of the young people only, and not allow the parties to take him. I found him to be understanding and he replied, "certainly we are with the revolution of the youth, and praise your steps in this direction.” Q / Do not you see that Hirak more dissent and disunity? No. The Youth Revolution is uniform and splits hold only at the level of parties organizations and leaders, and indeed such things happen. But what we can do as long as they receive checks and money orders, and raise pictures of dinosaurs. They certainly do not represent the pulse of the street. Q / This means that there exist among the Hirak ranks those who have their own agendas? Yes. It is clear and obvious and the Southern street speaks for itself while these leaders speak for themselves, and I do not want to give names now, but time will expose them. Please no need waste interview time in such things because I had previously announced my position and disavowed them and I joined the youth sector and the street. We raised the motto of " Southern man! Have no leaders today!” We have only the South. It is our commander. Q / Let us get back point if you please, O Sheikh. You attacked the socialists and burned the Southern flag. Do you not see that they are angry with you? We often tried to convince them that the South is the basis of every discussion, but they refused only to endorse Hirak in favor of political parties and Joint Meetings, in the their desire for unity and claimed that they are trustees on the South. I undertook a campaign to expose them. I want to clarify another question. I have not burned the Southern flag and had already made that clear more than once, and these socialist people who are disgruntled today with Tariq Al-fadhli have burned the south and its hopes. Today, you can see how the castles of the National Party in Egypt, the Tunisian Ruling Party, and the Baath Party in Iraq crumbled, as the socialist
party destroyed the country and people. It is true that I burned the Red Star, the symbol of the Socialists – we won't accept custody of the land of the South. I will be resistant to the occupation and against anyone who wants to impose a trusteeship on the South and its people. The JMP and before it the Congress Party can go to hell. Q / This means that you reject the party in all its forms? Yes, all parties without exception can go to hell. Q /, But with your way, you spark the flame of controversy and fuel the fires of conflict in order to implement your own agenda, do you not? And what’s my agenda? Q / They described you as "a fork which the State wants to be embedded in the throat of
‘‘ “But what we can do as long as they receive checks and money orders, and raise pictures of dinosaurs”
the Hirak?” It isn’t truem because I am the one who united the Hirak movement and I did so proudly. They worked to divide the Hirak and we were patient with their offences and conspiracies in order to maintain the unity of the movement. I announce the challenge again and ask them to respond to my words if they have something to say. Q / From your point of view, What are the steps to make the Hirak recover? To go down to the street and socialize with people and to raise the slogan of "the people want to overthrow the regime.” Q / Is it fair to say that you cannot live a silently, away from the limelight? These are among the fabrications which sick people have said. I have never called a journalist, local or abroad, to make an interview with me. I am not looking for leadership. I’ll tell you a secret: I didn't tell anyone before that I called the brothers in the Hirak leadership to sign an honor Charter calling not to nominate or pay any person for any government position after the liberation of the South. But they opposed the idea because they are looking for titles and positions. I don’t want anything. Q / You raised the American flag a little while ago, then later burned it. Is this a contradiction? This point I spoke more than once and the conclusion is that Ali Abdullah Saleh accused me publicly in an interview with MBC that I am from al-Qaeda and his newspapers used to say al-Qaeda equals the Hirak. Many journalists from Yemen and outside came to me and all of them got the message. Is it possible that
Tariq al-Fadhli could not be a terrorist after all? When I raised the American flag, it was only to clarify that we need democracy and freedom and to prove to the world that we are the opposite of what is echoed by the Sana'a regime. Some American journalists gave their flag as a present, and I raised it. Q /, But you then burned it? Yes. First, specifically after the website Wikileaks revealed that the Americans are the ones who hit the al-Majala'a area after it was reported first that Yemeni aircraft were responsible. Secondly, U.S. support for the system of Ali Abdullah Saleh after a visit by Secretary of State Hilary Clinton to Sana'a, who confirmed her support for the President and the Unity. She forgot the pains of the Southern people, although more interests of America and the world may be in the South than in the North, and this position certainly angered me, so I burned the flag. Q / But some interpreted it as a kind of courtship with former friends. Who are my former friends? I have many friends. Q / I mean Osama bin Laden. Osama is my friend, and I will declare that I love him everywhere. Q / Do you still in touch with him? Oh, God, I hope to achieve this access. "Hey America, can you provide me a line or a code to communicate with my friend Osama?” Q / You described the President as a “dictator and tyrant,” but didn’t you have his support at one point? Never! I didn’t have his support before or now. Q / But it’s been hinted that you are now linked to the
president and the leaders of the state and continue to receive their support? Where is the support that you talking about? If you mean my salary, I am, like any person, getting a salary, and all of them in the movement today receive their salaries from the state.
"Hey America, can you provide me a line or a code to communicate with my friend Osama?”
My relationships with the authority to which you are referring is to Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar. He is my relative, as I have relatives in Oman, Saudi, Egyptian, and even Russia. Is it forbidden to communicate with my relatives? Q / Do you have a relationship with Abdul-Malik Al-Houthi? No. I agree to create a relationship with him if he will support us to overthrow the regime in the South. [laughter] Al-Houthi is the one authorized to overthrow the regime in the North. If your newspaper can reach him, we will tell him to support us, and we will support him. Q / Recently, you have convened a meeting in Zinjibar meeting and made recommendations. Who has the right to deliver this speech? It is me in my capacity as the sponsor of this agreement.
This meeting was held with one group (“Najah”) and The National Councils groups and others, but they have later worked after forming their leaders in some provinces for the benefit of the Yemeni Socialist Party. They refused my idea to widen the council and involve many sectors of people. They also excluded all the other sectors of people and acted as the Power. So I took the initiative. Q After all of the above, Do you regret joining the Hirak movement? No, I do not regret it at all, but I feel really regretful because of the actions of some hesitating people, and they have found, unfortunately, rather unaware followers. I feel proud that I joined the Hirak. I am also ready to sacrifice myself and my children for the South and its dignity. I do not regret in all what I have said and worked for and I will continue strongly until the last day of my life. Finally, away from the sphere of politics and the Hirak. How do you spend your day, especially when you are in your home in a state of house arrest? I am satisfied here! You know why? Because I feel that I am like a thorn in the eye of the enemy, as the authority, the occupation forces and all the parties wish that I would go away, but I will keep up resistance until we achieve victory in the South. By the way, I go out to the street and meet a lot of people and work to solve a lot of tribal problems. Sorry, I mean how do you spend your time in the house? Of course in reading newspapers and sitting with family and receiving many visitors and logged onto the internet. Thank you for your patience. Thank you and your readers.
Sunday, Feb. 27, 2011 Issue 34 www.nationalyemen.com
Treaties of friendship and protection between the British government and Sultanates and Sheikhdoms of South Yemen By Ahmed Bashi , Hom Brenham till procedures that satisfy the British government has to be undertaken.
Treaty signed on September 6th, 1802 between Sultan Ahmed Abdul Karim of Lahj and the British ambassador Sir Hom Brenham This agreement was held at the behest of the Marquis Wellesley, a parliament member of the British state entrusted with the work of Britain's holdings in East India by his deputy, Sir Hom Brenham with Sultan Ahmed Abdul Karim, Sultan of Lahj through his representative Prince Ahmed Bashi to forge and consolidate friendship, goodwill and the establishment and reinforcement of commercial transactions between the two parties. First condition: Trade Continuation would be between the East India Company and British nationals who are allowed to conduct business transactions by the general governor of India and between the nationals of the Sultan Ahmed Abdel Karim Second condition: The Sultan accepts making the Port of Aden, open to all imported goods on English vessels and to take customs duties on goods and tradelisted goods at 2% percent for no more than a period of ten years, it is not agreed for the Sultan nor his subordinates to receive any other fees, for anchorage, or in terms of customs. Third condition After the lapse of ten years mentioned above, the Sultan has the right to increase fees to 3% percent, but it is not agreed for his heirs and successors to increase it. And if any condition gets breached friendly relations and commercial transactions remain with the British nation, and, accordingly, the Sultan pledges not to impose any other fees, whether customs fee or for anchorage.
Fourth condition The payment of customs duty mentioned above is to be paid 2% percent for the stated period of ten years, and then 3% percent after the expiration of the term depending on the exported goods from Aden from the Sultan country's crops or by the surrounding countries. Fifth condition If the above company or a British national bought goods from Aden city or its port and the goods were imported from Africa or Ethiopia or any other country that doesn’t belong to the Sultan, then the Sultan does not have to pay them any fees, as the fees due on them may be paid when it descends to Aden, so the Sultan may be satisfied not to impose any additional customs tax to it. Sixth condition British nationals have the full freedom in their business transactions and are not forced to direct their business by a person, or persons, or broker, or an interpreter, but of their own will - and have the freedom to work without being under the pressure of the Sultan.
Seventh condition British nationals are entitled to hand over their money according to their choice without any coercion, whether these nationals are sick, or healthy. If a person dies, all his wealth, after payment of debt, is submitted to the Sultan’s nationals or to the Governor of Aden, who in turn sends it to the appropriate sources for the benefit of the deceased's family and his legal heirs. Eighth condition A Register must be allocated to identify the names of British nationals living in Aden and to recognize each certificate registered in the office of the judge and the Governor of Aden to prevent each conflict or claim of Europeans, or other foreign nationals. Any name not registered does not receive the privilege of the seventh condition. Ninth condition The benefits resulting from the seventh condition include traders, travelers and the officers entrusted with monitoring all ships and naval vessels that travel under the British flag, whether died with a last will and testament or not. Tenth condition The Sultan Pledges on his own behalf and on behalf of his heirs and his successors to make the assistance through his power to collect the debt to nationals of the British under the protection of his nationals if it was proved to the judge. And the judge is entitled to submit the case to order the records of the debtor and sell it for the benefit of the creditor after three months. And if the debtor is a British national then the judge has to jail him
Eleventh condition If any conflict occurs between registered British nationals, a claim is to be raised to Aden’s Governor, who will undertake procedures followed in his country. The governor’s ruling will be effective in each case that doesn’t exceed 2000 Riyals, and if more than that they can appeal to the Government of India. If both sides were not satisfied with the ruling then the judge has the right to imprison him as requested by the governor. The purpose is to fully support the system and the agreement between the registered British nationals and nationals of the Sultan. Twelfth Condition All disputes between British nationals and nationals of the Sultan are resolved under the laws of local assessments. Thirteenth condition The Sultan may give the
British state a land west of the city for use and the company may build homes and undertake developing the spot where appropriate. The Sultan is committed to prevent any building for a distance of about twenty cubits in front of the sight and fifteen cubits on any other side. Fourteenth condition: The British have the right to enter the city from any entrance, and ride horses, mules and donkeys Etc., without contempt or any objection or insult. Fifteenth condition If a person escapes from the State’s soldiers and is a non-Muslims national and seeks refuge with a judge or to any prince from the government and is requested to convert to Islam, the judge is to send an official statement to the British authorities. If the judge didn’t receive the governor’s statement within three days, then judge or the Prince may act based on his opinion in dealing with said person.
Sixteenth condition The Sultan allocates a land for free for the burial of British nationals who die within his borders, where they do not pay anything except for burial expenses. Seventeenth condition Any article beyond this Treaty that is proposed by one of the parties in this agreement may be considered attached to this Treaty. The representative of the British state is prepared to accept any opinion that might be expressed by the Sultan and submit it to the superior, competent authorities, and to buy any amount of coffee or deliver any goods at agreed upon prices. These seventeen conditions were reached through consent from both parties and therefore the original Arabic text was stamped by the Sultan and signed by the British representative on the English copy on the military boat “Rani” on the way to Aden. September 6th, 1802 AD. Signatures Ahmed Bashi Hom Brenham
Sunday, Feb. 27, 2011 Issue 34 www.nationalyemen.com
Addressing HIV/AIDS in Yemen: A Closing Window of Opportunity By Dan Driscoll When one discusses the primary health issues of Yemen and the priorities of funding, HIV/AIDS almost always falls near the bottom of the list. This is clearly shown in the recent failure of Yemen to receive further HIV/AIDS funding in the Global Health Funds next round of funding – a significant portion of HIV/AIDS funding in Yemen. The failure however, is not on the responsible organizations such as the UNDP, but a lack of sufficient prioritization of organizations such as the Global Health Fund. By overlooking the potential dangers of HIV/AIDS, the Yemen government and its international partners are gambling on the hopes that a potentially dangerous situation remains dormant. It’s not difficult to see why the Global Health Fund declined further funding after a superficial glance at the statistics that are often cited to demonstrate the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Yemen. Only 318 cases were recorded in 2009 -- significantly less than in many other countries affected with HIV/AIDS. In some ways, which will be discussed, this is a striking number, yet it could easily be pointed out that ultimately this fact only contributes to prevalence rate of approximately between .14%-.2% of the total population. This data grows increasingly pale in comparison with the staggering statistics of countries in Sub-Saharan Africa such as the 26% prevalence rate in Swaziland – the highest in the world. Yet the low official rates and differences of statistics between countries shouldn’t mislead the priorities of Yemen as it advances health in the 21st century. What donors and public officials may not understand is that beneath the facade of these statistics looms a large danger that could create one more disastrous problem as Yemen develops. The current conditions in Yemen represent a perfect breeding ground for the HIV/AIDS virus to grow exponentially as the population has little information regarding the virus as well as lack of surveillance and response mechanisms. For example, in a recent study of a local secondary school many misconceptions were discovered among youth – an at risk group of HIV/AIDS. Notably, only 40% of students did not know that HIV/AIDS is currently untreatable, nor is there a vaccine readily available. 18.5% of students believed that HIV/AIDS could be transferred by mosquito bites, and 40% believed you could contract HIV/AIDS by wearing the clothes of infected people. Most worrying, 95% of the students surveyed believed that young people are not susceptible to HIV/AIDS.
The lack of awareness is severely compounded by the fact that there is a lack of surveillance that limits the amount we actually know about the virus in the country. With limited epidemiological data in Yemen, an accurate level of HIV cannot be clearly defined. This shows in discrepancies between confirmed cases and estimated cases. From the first documented case of HIV/AIDS in Yemen in 1987 until 2003, there was a total of 2,883 HIV/AIDs cases confirmed. This is contrasted with a total of 24,000 cases estimated by the World Health Organization in 2003. One reason for this is that 75% of the country lives in rural areas, far from any source of medical center where the disease can be monitored and addressed. The lack of data is also a result –and a cause of the spread of HIV/AIDS- of the lack monitoring even at blood transfusion centers found in urban areas. The centers may have guidelines to screen for HIV/AIDS but do not have the resources to do so always. This results not only in a lack of knowledge, but also contributes to the spread of HIV/AIDS as blood transfusion accounts for 6% of HIV/AIDS cases in Yemen. Yemen even lacks proper data even on the main target groups that are most at risk such as sex workers, intravenous drug users, among others.
Low official rates shouldn’t mislead the priorities of Yemen as it advances health in the 21st century.
The consequences of a lack of awareness and knowledge on HIV/AIDS is made clear in an analysis of confirmed HIV/AIDS cases in Yemen during the 1990’s . In 1995, it was documented that the male to female ratio of HIV AIDS was 4 to 1, respectively. This statistic was not surprising as many males began to travel to outside countries for work during this time and put them at risk of contracting the virus. However, the statistic changed in an alarming way. In 1996, this ratio morphed into a 2 to 1 ratio, and by 1999, it was 1 to 1. This may suggest just how quickly the virus was passed from males who had HIV and passed it on to their wives and sexual partners. Yemen despite its conservative culture - is not immune to a rapid spread and increase of the HIV/AIDS virus. As a result, Yemen and the international community must be concerned with how such a rapid change in statistics plays out with a population of 24 million people. Current research can provide some insight into the potential growth of AIDS in Yemen as it was observed in many African countries that once a critical mass is hit, the virus spreads rapidly, increasing ten-fold in as little as 5 years. As a result, Yemen sits upon an increasingly wobbly fence between containment of the disease or an increase that could spiral out of control. It cannot be denied that growth is already taking place; in 2000, there were 111 new cases of HIV/AIDS documented, followed by 318 in 2009 (Figure 1). The increase is worrying as it comes with the recent UNAIDS announcement in its Global Report for 2010 that the global health community is actually beginning to slow down and even turn the epidemic around. The report found that new global HIV infections have been reduced by nearly 20% in the past 10
Figure 1: Incidence of Reported Cases by Year 1987-2009
years. Yemen is a complete reversal of that trend. This information should prompt action and not complacency in dealing with HIV/AIDS. The one thing that is certain with HIV/AIDS Yemen is that it is in the beginning stages of its spread. As such, an unprecedented opportunity exists as it makes knowledge not only the most powerful weapon against HIV/AIDS, but the cheapest. It must be asked among government officials and the international donor community if it is better to currently invest in cost-effective awareness campaigns and better surveillance now or the exorbitant costs attributed to an explosion in HIV/AIDS in our country later? Fortunately, the Yemen Government has demonstrated tremendous foresight and has demonstrated high levels of
the Ministry of Guidance and Endowment supporting the rights of people with AIDS and much more. Additionally, the Yemen Government’s Ministry of Heath and Population has created lasting relationships with international partners to achieve impressive accomplishments in dealing with HIV/AIDS. These efforts have created 5 anti-retroviral treatment centers in sites throughout Yemen. Furthermore, 17 clinics have been opened throughout the country that provide HIV/AIDS screening as well as advice and support for infected individuals. Despite these accomplishments, it is not enough and many challenges remain that must be addressed. One of the largest challenges that remains is the stigma associated with the disease.
won’t happen on its own. Additionally, the health infrastructure is very weak and unequipped to deal with issues of HIV/AIDs. Furthermore, the budget of the Yemeni government often does not match its will and rhetoric in stopping the disease. The government’s financial support is as critical as ever as in order to navigate the dearth of funding suddenly imposed on the country’s HIV/AIDS efforts as a result of the Global Health Fund’s decision. The continuation of successful HIV/AIDS projects will be threatened if the government cannot follow through with its commitments. As such, the Yemeni Government, and international organizations and donors, must renew their commitment to fighting HIV/AIDS. Responsible officials must take this the current opportunity and
Figure 2: Distribution of Reported Cases By Gender from 1987 - 2010 Source: UNGASS Country Report
political will in addressing the virus. This political commitment has prompted many workshops for political and religious leaders in all Yemeni governorates, mandated institutions to treat people living with HIV/AIDS as any other patient, the encouragement of participation by ministers in HIV/AIDS specific events, issues of legal opinions from
Many, particularly in rural areas claim that increased awareness of HIV/AIDS will serve as a catalyst of promiscuity and refuse to acknowledge it. Stigma is not only confined to rural areas, when the first HIV/AIDS organization started work in Yemen, angry mobs threw rocks at the buildings for weeks on end. Changing the stigma of HIV/AIDS
Source: UNGASS Country Progress Report
work together to effectively combat and prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS in Yemen. Given the environment it is necessary that we prioritize our efforts on cost-effective surveillance. This will allow donors more up to date and vital information that will inform them of the real problem as programs such as the National AIDS Program moves forward in implementing needed awareness and response projects where they are needed most. While greatly enhancing the assessments of the current status of HIV/AIDS it will allow these projects to effectively and easily prevent the spread of the disease. Lastly, we must increase our support to patients with HIV/AIDS through cost effective means such as training patients with the virus to console others. By implementing these ideas and ensuring a long-term commitment to them, the Yemeni government and international community can take make an already low rate of prevalence of HIV/AIDS in Yemen even lower. The current rates in Yemen should not be a call for contentment, but a call for action. If HIV/AIDS isn’t acted on now, a scarce window of opportunity will surely close.
Sunday, Feb. 27, 2011 Issue 34 www.nationalyemen.com
Gaddaﬁ vows to crush protesters Libyan leader speaks to supporters in the capital's Green Square, saying he will arm people against protesters. Muammar Gaddafi, the Libyan leader, has appeared in Tripoli's Green Square, to address a crowd of his supporters in the capital. The speech, which also referred to Libya's war of independence with Italy, appeared to be aimed at rallying what remains of his support base, with specific reference to the country's youth. "We can defeat any aggression if necessary and arm the people," Gaddafi said, in footage that was aired on Libyan state television on Friday. "I am in the middle of the people.. we will fight ! we will defeat them if they want ! we will defeat any foreign aggression. "Dance ! sing and get ready ! this is the spirit ! this is much better than the lies of the Arab propaganda," he said. His last speech, on Thursday evening had been made by phone, leading to speculation about his physical condition. The footage aired on Friday, however, showed Gaddafi standing above the square, waving his fist as he spoke. Tarik Yousef, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington, said that most of the individuals on Green Square are genuine Gaddafi supporters. "Most of these people have known nothing else but Gaddafi. They don’t know any other leader. And many of them stand to lose when Gaddafi falls," Yousef said. "I am not completely surprised that they still think that he is the right man for Libya. What is striking is that [Gaddafi] did not talk about all the liberated cities in his country. "This was a speech intended show his defiance and to rally against what he calls foreign interference. But even his children have admitted that the east of the country is no longer under the regime's control." Gaddafi's speech came on a day when tens of thousands of Libyans in Tripoli and elsewhere in the country took to the streets calling for an end to his rule. Heavy gunfire As demonstrations began in Tripoli following the midday prayer, security forces loyal to Gaddafi reportedly began firing on them. There was heavy gunfire in various Tripoli districts including Fashloum, Ashour, Jumhouria and Souq Al, according to sources. "The security forces fired indiscriminately on the demonstrators," said a resident of one of the capital's eastern suburbs. "There were deaths in the streets of Sug al-Jomaa," the resident said. The death toll since the violence began remains unclear, though on Thursday Francois Zimeray, France's top human rights official, said it could be as high as 2,000
people killed. But Saif al-Islam, Muammar Gaddafi's son, has called on the European Union to send a fact-finding team to Libya. "We are not afraid of the facts. We are worried about rumours and lies," he said. Violence flared up even before the Friday sermons were over, according to a source in Tripoli. "People are rushing out of mosques even before Friday prayers are finished because the state-written sermons were not acceptable, and made them even more angry," the source said. Libyan state television aired one such sermon on Friday, in an apparent warning to protesters. "As the prophet said, if you dislike your ruler or his behaviour, you should not raise your sword against him, but be patient, for those who disobey the rulers will die as infidels," the speaker told his congregation in Tripoli. During Friday prayers, a religious leader in the town of Mselata, 80km to the east of Tripoli, called for the people to fight back. Immediately after the prayers, more than 2,000 people, some of them armed with rifles taken from the security forces, headed towards Tripol to demand the fall of Gaddafi. The group made it as far as the city of Tajoura, where it was stopped by a group loyal to Gaddafi. They were checked by foreign, French-speaking mercenaries and gunfire was exchanged. There were an unknown number of casualties, based on information from witnesses who had reached on the Libyan-Tunisian border.
tions that Chadian mercenaries were being recruited to go to Libya. "International media inundates the public opinion with information alleging some Chadian would be mercenaries currently acting in Libya," Moussa Mahamat Dago, the Chad foreign ministry’s general secretary, said on Friday. "We want to formally and categorically deny all those allegations that are dangerous and could pose a material and physical danger to the many Chadians living in Libya for years and always in a peaceful way." People in eastern parts of the country, a region believed to be largely free from Gaddafi's control, held protests in support for the demonstrations in the capital. "Friday prayer in Benghazi have seen thousands and thousands on the streets. All the banners are for the benefit of the capital, [they are saying] 'We're with you, Tripoli.” In the town of Derna, protesters held banners with the messages such as "We are one Tribe called Libya, our only capital is Tripoli, we want freedom of speech". Sources reported on Friday that army commanders in the
east who had renounced Gaddafi's leadership had told her that military commanders in the country's west were beginning to turn against him. They warned, however, that the Khamis Brigade, an army special forces brigade that is loyal to the Gaddafi family and is equipped with sophisticated weaponry, is currently still fighting anti-government forces.
"Dance ! sing and get ready ! this is the spirit ! this is much better than the lies of the Arab propaganda," said al-Gaddafi
The correspondent, who cannot be named for security reasons, said that despite the gains, people are anxious about what Gaddafi might do
Foreign mercenaries There have been frequent reports of foreign mercenaries working for Gaddafi against the protesters, but their nationality remains uncertain. The government of Chad has moved to counter allega-
Anti-government partisans seize military equipment in Libya’s East
next, and the fact that his loyalists were still at large. "People do say that they have broken the fear factor, that they have made huge territorial gains,” she said. "[Yet] there's no real celebration or euphoria that the job has been done." On Friday morning, our correspondents reported quoting witnesses that the town of Zuwarah had been abandoned by security forces and completely in the hands of anti-Gaddafi protesters. Checkpoints in the country's west on roads leading to the Tunisian border, however, were still being controlled by Gaddafi loyalists. In the east, similar checkpoints were manned by anti-Gaddafi forces, who had set up a "humanitarian aid corridor" as well as a communications corridor to the Egyptian border, our correspondent reported. Thousands massed in Az Zawiyah's Martyr's Square after the attack, calling on Gaddafi to leave office, and on Friday morning, explosions were heard in the city. Arms caches blown up Witnesses say pro-Gaddafi forces were blowing up arms
caches, in order to prevent anti-government forces from acquiring those weapons. Clashes were also reported in the city of Misurata, located 200km east of Tripoli, where witnesses said a pro-Gaddafi army brigade attacked the city's airport with mortars and rocket-propelled grenades. Locals reported that pro-democracy protesters had managed to fight off that attack. "Revolutionaries have driven out the security forces," they said, adding that "heavy machine guns and anti-aircraft guns" had been used against them. Mohamed Senussi, a resident of Misurata, said calm had returned to the city after the "fierce battle" near the airport. "The people's spirits here are high, they are celebrating and chanting 'God is Greatest'," he told the Reuters news agency by telephone. Another witness warned, however, that protesters in Misurata felt "isolated" as they were surrounded by nearby towns still in Gaddafi's control. Protesters and air force personnel who have renounced Gaddafi's leadership also overwhelmed a nearby military base where Gaddafi loyalists were taking refuge, according to a medical official at the base. They disabled air force fighter jets at the base so that they could not be used against protesters. Oil terminal Soldiers helped anti -Gaddafi protesters take the oil terminal in the town of Berga, according to Reuters. The oil refinery in Ras Lanuf has also halted its operations and most staff has left, according to a source in the company. Support for Gaddafi within the country's elite continues to decline. On Friday, Abdel Rahman Al Abar, Libya's Chief Prosecutor, became one of the latest top officials to resign in protest over the bloodshed. "What happened and is happening are massacres and bloodshed never witnessed by the Libyan people. The logic of power and violence is being imposed instead of seeking democratic, free, and mutual dialogue," he said. His comments came as UN's highest human-rights body held a special session on Friday to discuss what it's chief had earlier described as possible "crimes against humanity" by the Gaddafi government. Navi Pillay, the UN High Commissioner on Human Rights, urged world leaders to "step in vigorously" to end the violent crackdown. The United Nations Security Council was to hold a meeting on the situation in Libya later in the day, with sanctions the possible imposition of a no-fly zone over the country under Chapter VII of the UN charter on the table. courtesy of Al-Jazeera
Sunday, Feb. 27, 2011 Issue 34 www.nationalyemen.com
Can the Security Forces Deal with Aden Wisely?
By Fakhri al-Arashi, NY Aden, the commercial capital of Yemen has achieved this reputation mainly before the country united in 1990. Since then, the city had major challenges politically, socially as well in terms of infrastructure to live up to its former glory. The current divisions in the political scene of Yemen as well as, the ongoing demonstrations in the Arab world has raised resistance against the ruling party in overcoming business challenges in the Southern governorates. Every Friday security were spread in the different corners to secure Aden from collective gathering. The recent Arab revolutionary vision is not new to Yemen as few from the South are calling for breaking the unity since the civil war in the summer of 1994. Aden witnessed few demonstrations moved by al-Harik members last January, at which point unrest calling for the improvement of the standards of living increased. The people in al-Dhala’a, Lahaj, Abyen and some other areas in the southern part of Yemen has failed to harm the government and they have decided to move to Aden for stronger influence.
The plate cars that reﬂects Sana’a sign meet no interest in the street
The third Friday of rage in a row occurred February 25th, 2011, Aden had a quiet morning with very slow movement for cars and people. More than ten thousands soldiers were spread all over the city, tanks and military vehicles were seen massively in the major access points banning the demonstrators from arriving to the gathering points at Khour Maksar and al-Shabat areas.
Passengers in a minibus in the Seirah Area were discussing President Saleh, and the President’s desire to avoid the end of the Tunisian, Egyptian and the Libyan Presidents. They noted that president came to know that the people in these countries, including Yemen, who have been tortured and suffer the arbitrary, poverty and neglecting of their daily need. They said that President Saleh has issued a decree to reduce the electricity invoice and he canceled the old balance bills. A receptionist at the Royal Hotel said that the current problems have affected on the local tourism and the occupancy dropped to 10-15%. He said the lack of opportunities among the youth pushed them to protest the corruption that witness around them. At a check point in front of the Mercury Aden Hotel, the people were diverted to move through Sahal Abyen road (Abyen beach). The security guard was saying to his friend, “look, these are our friends during morning hours and they shot us at night.” The taxi driver smiled widely. Mohammed Mahyoub, 26-years old, said that the demonstrations turn into a day for robbery and looting. “Dar Saa’ad and al-Shaikh Othman are the starting points for the youth to move, and it will end in clashes between the thieves and the protestors,” Mahyoub said. While we were driving in different areas in Aden he was talking to his friends over the phone saying he could not go back to his house, as all streets are closed – “please close all shops and stay inside.” On Friday, ATMs were cleared from money, mainly IBY, while the commercial bank had three to four security personnel in front of every ATM. Shops were closed and a few cars could be seen in the street after the Friday majority went back home and some gathered at Khor Maksar were clashes had left Eighteenth injures from soldiers and demonstrators. At night clashes took place in alMua’la killed five.
‘‘ Graduated students from different faculties are working either as Qat sellers or at moll shops or running their own business
A citizen was driving for a long distance to reach Aden Moll, said, “I am with security but not from earlier hours. Since 9 O’clock I cloud not reach my destination,” said Musadak. The plate cars that reflects Sana’a sign meet no interest in the street. “I had my car where protestors were knocking car body because of the plate “ I will change the car plate, said
Musadak. The gathering increased in Aden after sunset till midnight and the majority of them were between 16 years to 35 years old. While those who started demonstration at the earlier days has felt un-encouraged with continual failing on the interest of opposition leaders in their share in power. The southern governorate leaders disagree with each other on what they want from the government and they have shared the ideas with northern governorate for President Saleh to stay in power and dismiss his family and relative from military power and strategic positions at the government.
Documentary papers reveal over 100 names are being distributed and shared through emails against those who stole and block properties in Aden. The list had two categories of big names like President Saleh, his family members, northern sheikh, some governors, ministers, military men and businessmen too. The list details includes the areas size by kilometers and location. Aden had an improvement in its infrastructure but has recently performed poorly in terms of business. The business at the free zone is slow and below demand – governmental operations are slow too and people are suffering as a result. A local businessman noted
that all the business opportunities are in Sana’a, and that even medical treatment takes place in Sana’a and citizens from Aden or Lahj travel there for that purpose. Graduated students from different faculties are working either as Qat sellers or at moll shops or running their own business. The major sources for Aden’s income are from the local tourism, Fishing, Aden’s port, Aden’s refinery and other governmental and private business. In the end, it is clear that the lack of serious economic opportunities or investment is driving youth to the street. Aden deserve more attention before it collapse .
Sunday, Feb. 27, 2011 Issue 34 www.nationalyemen.com
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