Yemeni official condemns international silence on Houthi violations of children’s rights

Yemeni children accompanied by their fathers hold weapons during a gathering in Sanaa to show support for the Houthis on September 27, 2018. (File/AFP)
Updated 29 November 2018
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Yemeni official condemns international silence on Houthi violations of children’s rights

  • He claimed that silence of the international community on violations committed by the militia encouraged the Houthis to kidnap children and put them on the front lines
  • Meanwhile, Yemeni Vice President Ali Mohsen Al-Ahmar met with the Ambassador of the United Kingdom to Yemen, Michael Aron, to discuss the latest developments

DUBAI: Yemen’s Minister of State, General Abdul Ghani Jamil, has criticized the international community for what he said was its silence over crimes and violations committed against children by the Houthi militia.

During his speech at a human rights conference held in Marib on “The Role of Media and Human Rights Organizations in Reducing Child Recruitment,” he said the Houthis violated international laws and the humanitarian rights of children by recruiting them as child soldiers in their “losing war.” 

He claimed that silence of the international community on violations committed by the militia encouraged the Houthis to kidnap children and put them on the front lines.

The seminar dealt with the role of the media in raising awareness about the dangers of recruiting children and the importance of exposing those who recruit them.

The Houthi militia, under the guise of educational institutions, change the curricula in order to recruit children to fight in their ranks, according to Jamil.

Since the Houthi militia overthrew the internationally recognized government in Sanaa, Yemen has faced what the United Nations has called the worst humanitarian crisis since World War II.

The conflict has had a severe effect on children’s education, wellbeing and health. The aid group, Save the Children, says 85,000 children, younger than five, might have died of hunger or disease in the war.

2019 Relief Plan

In response to the on-going suffering Yemeni people, officials and international aid organizations have discussed ways of bringing relief to the war-torn country. 

Yemen’s Minister of Local Administration and Chairman of the Higher Commission for Relief, Abdulraqeeb Fatah, discussed the relief plan for Yemen in 2019 with the Deputy Executive Director of the World Food Program (WFP) Amir Abdulla and the WFP’s Yemen Country Director Stephen Anderson.

The Yemeni minister stressed the importance of relief work and livelihood projects, as well as sustainable development programs and enhancing stability in Yemen’s provinces.

Fatah discussed the possibility of transferring part of the plan’s financial assistance through the Central Bank of Yemen, stressing the importance of strengthening monitoring and follow-up mechanisms to ensure aid is received by those in need.

Abdulla stated that WFP is committed to providing emergency food assistance to address the humanitarian situation in Yemen and to ensure that the spread of famine is averted.  He said the relief plan aimed to provide food assistance to 12 million people per month.

Sustainable Peace

Meanwhile, Yemeni Vice President Ali Mohsen Al-Ahmar met with the Ambassador of the United Kingdom to Yemen, Michael Aron, to discuss the latest developments and efforts to achieve lasting peace.

The vice president said his government would grant the Houthi militia a new opportunity to make the right judgement and to serve Yemen and the interest of its people instead of Iran.

The British ambassador reiterated his country’s support for the internationally recognized government and efforts of the UN envoy, stressing the UK’s keenness to achieve a just and sustainable peace in Yemen.


Iranian official in surprise visit to Lebanon

Updated 18 July 2019
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Iranian official in surprise visit to Lebanon

  • Some of the threats made by the Zionist enemy are not in favor of the region’s security, Abdollahian says

BEIRUT: “Lebanon must be kept out of all regional crises,” said Iran’s Shoura Council assistant speaker for international affairs, Hossein Amir Abdollahian, during a surprise visit to Beirut on Wednesday.

“We say at the top of our voice that Iran and its allies will not allow the Zionist entity and the US to damage the region’s security.”

Following his meeting with Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri, Abdollahian said that Tehran “is convinced that the security of Lebanon is the security of the region and the Islamic Republic of Iran.”

Abdollahian added that “some of the threats made by the Zionist enemy are not in favor of the region’s security.”

He described his talks with Berri as “good and constructive.”

“We will not allow Israel, US to interfere with regional security.”

Hossein Amir Abdollahian, Iran’s Shoura Council official

Abdollahian said: “We have come today to reaffirm that Iran fully supports the people, army, resistance and government of Lebanon, and we look forward to developing relations between our two countries until they reach the highest levels.”

He said he believes that the statements of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu are for “domestic consumption,” accusing him of “making some moves in the region that are not in his favor.”

Netanyahu responded to a message from Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah on Sunday by threatening Hezbollah during Israel’s Cabinet meeting.

Netanyahu said: “Let me be clear that if Hezbollah dares to commit an act of stupidity and attack Israel, we will deal a crushing military blow on Lebanon. But unlike Nasrallah, I do not intend to detail our plans. It would be enough to recall that, for years, Nasrallah dug terror tunnels, and we demolished them within a few days.”