Thousands of human rights violations by Houthis reported in last year

A Shi'ite Houthi rebel walks out of a canopy near sandbags near a checkpoint in Sanaa, in this December 11, 2014 file photo. (Reuters)
Updated 10 April 2017

Thousands of human rights violations by Houthis reported in last year

ADEN: Houthi militias and Saleh loyalists have committed brutal violations of Yemeni people’s rights, including arbitrary arrests and abduction of civilians, between Jan. 1, 2016, and Dec. 31 of the same year, the Yemeni Coalition for Monitoring Human Rights Violations (YCMHR) said in its annual report.
The report documented 5,092 cases of violations, of which 4,882 are arbitrary arrests and 210 are cases of forced disappearance, all contravening international humanitarian law and international human rights law.
Most of the violations were committed by armed Houthis and by militias of ousted President Ali Abdullah Saleh — 4,841 cases, or 95 percent of the total — while security authorities committed 124 violation.
The report, a copy of which was received by Arab News, shows that 2016 witnessed a wave of arbitrary arrests and abductions by the allied Houthi-Saleh militias, targeting various groups of society, including children and women.
According to the statistics in the report, which monitored violations in all governorates of the Republic of Yemen, Sanaa governorate comes in the first place, with the number violations reaching 693 cases.
Al-Baydah governorate comes in second, with 655 documented violations, followed by the governorate of Ebb, with 539 documented violations.
The governorate of Hodeidah came in fourth, with 506 cases, followed by Emran governorate, with 479 cases.
Arbitrary arrests and abductions also targeted women; 20 cases of abuse were recorded against them.
In 2016, Yemen’s children were subjected to severe forms of violations. The YCMHR field monitoring teams documented 118 cases of child abuse and three cases of enforced disappearance of children.
Politicians were most vulnerable to arbitrary arrests and enforced disappearances.
According to the report, 1,032 violations were committed against politicians.
Activists and human rights defenders subjected to violations ranked third, with 702 cases violations documented in the report.


Riyadh roads turn green as world’s largest urban greening project branches out

Based on experience, roads and streets without trees contain eight to 10 times the amount of dust compared with streets lined with trees on both sides. (Photo/Supplied)
Updated 03 August 2020

Riyadh roads turn green as world’s largest urban greening project branches out

  • Capital gets a facelift as Vision 2030 program works to plant 7.5 million trees
  • Most of the tree species used in the project are from a well-developed local environment with low agricultural service and care

RIYADH: The Green Riyadh project, one of the world’s largest urban greening initiatives, is rapidly bearing fruit as it transforms main roads in the capital.

Major thoroughfares, including King Khalid, Makkah and King Salman roads, are getting a facelift as part of the Vision 2030 goal of improving quality of life in the city.
Dr. Fahad Al-Mana, a professor of Ornamental Plants, Gardens and Green Areas at King Saud University, told Arab News that native tree species being used for the project include Ziziphus spina-christi, Acacia gerrardii and Prosopis cineraria, commonly known as the ghaf tree.
According to Al-Mana, the trees can survive in harsh desert conditions and will grow without intensive agricultural care.
“Most of the tree species used in the planting of the Green Riyadh project are from a well-developed local environment with low agricultural service and care,” he said.
Environmental conditions in Riyadh were taken into account during the tree selection process. The species can grow to a large size in only three years.
“In some locations, they have moved large 3-year-old local trees that were taken care of in plant nurseries to new locations where they are growing successfully,” Al-Mana said.
Green Riyadh will increase the amount of greenery in the city and augment the green cover in the Saudi capital with the planting of 7.5 million trees around the city’s main features and facilities.
The project will reduce the average ambient temperature by 2 degrees Celsius and improve air quality, encouraging people to follow a healthier lifestyle by walking or cycling.

FASTFACTS

• The project will reduce the average ambient temperature by 2 degrees Celsius and improve air quality, encouraging people to follow a healthier lifestyle by walking or cycling.

• The project will maximize the use of recycled water in irrigation works by increasing usage from 90,000 cubic meters per day to more than 1 million cubic meters per day through the construction of a new recycled water network.

• Green space in the city will increase from 5 percent to 9 percent by 2030

“The aim of planting trees in the streets is to provide shade and moderate the temperature, especially in summer, which contributes to the purification of air and reduces environmental pollution by protecting the city from sand storms, winds and dust. In addition, it gives an aesthetic view and the element of nature enters the city and nearby structures,” said Al-Mana.
He added that trees, especially those planted in central street islands, must have long trunks and high branches to avoid hindering the movement of pedestrians and cars. The trunk must measure at least 3 to 4 meters and the size of the trees planted must be proportional to the width of the island.
Al-Mana said green space in the city will increase from 5 percent to 9 percent by 2030.
According to the Green Riyadh website, the project will maximize the use of recycled water in irrigation works by increasing usage from 90,000 cubic meters per
day to more than 1 million cubic meters per day through the construction of a new recycled water network.
Al-Mana said the Green Riyadh project will also reduce carbon dioxide and impurity levels in the city.
“Based on experience, roads and streets without trees contain eight to 10 times the amount of dust compared with streets lined with trees on both sides,” he said.