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Urgent Alert: Appeal for the Immediate Release of Yemeni Prisoners

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Appeal for the Immediate Release of Mohamed Ahmed Al-Yaremi and Ali Amen Nader

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Islamic Human Rights Commission
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4th October 2006

Urgent Alert: Appeal for the Immediate Release of Yemeni Prisoners

IHRC is urging all campaigners to contact the Foreign Office and the Yemeni Embassy to urge for the immediate release of Mohamed Ahmed Al-Yaremi and Ali Amen Nader.

1. Background

Ali Amen Nader and Mohamed Ahmed Al-Yaremi are two men who have disappeared in Yemen.

Ali Amen Nader was threatened by a sectarian group for celebrating Ghadeer Day in his house in Sana'a. Thereafter, in March 2002, he fled from Yemen and applied for political asylum in the Netherlands.

Mohamed Ahmed Al-Yaremi is a preacher who left Yemen in 2003 and applied for political asylum in Italy after a sectarian group, supported by the Yemeni authorities, made an attempt to assassinate him because of his preaching.

Both were accused of being followers of Husain Badr al-Din al-Houthi, a cleric of a Shia group, 'The Believing Youth.'

In 2004 there were mass uprisings in the north of Yemen between al-Houthi's followers and the Yemeni authorities. Al-Houthi was eventually killed in these clashes. At the end of the uprising, the Yemeni authorities began looking for Ali Amen Nader believing him to be a follower of al-Houthi, despite him being abroad since March 2002.

On the 25 September 2005, the Yemeni president Ali Abdullah Saleh, announced a general pardon for Al-Houthi's followers. In June 2006, Ali Amen Nader decided to return to Yemen but was arrested by the Yemeni authorities at Sana'a International Airport. In August 2006 Mohamed Ahmed Al-Yaremi returned to Yemen but was also arrested by the Yemeni authorities at Sana'a International Airport. No one knows where they are being kept or whether they are dead or alive.

There is no evidence or indication whatsoever that either M. Al-Yaremi or A. Nader have any connection to the al-Houthi group.

2. Action Required

a. Write to the European Commissioner for Human Rights and appeal to them regarding the fact that these two prisoners are amongst so many others who apply for political asylum in European countries yet are refused despite having a credible case and hence they have no choice but to return to their countries. Thereafter, they are seized by the authorities and mysteriously go missing.

Mr. Thomas Hammarberg
Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights
Council of Europe
F-67075 Strasbourg Cedex

Tel: +33 3 88 41 34 21
Fax : +33 3 90 21 50 53
commissioner@coe.int

b. Write to the Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett and express your concerns regarding the imprisonment of the Yemeni prisoners.

Rt. Hon. Margaret Beckett MP
Foreign & Commonwealth Office
King Charles Street
London
SW1A 2AH

Tel: +44 0207 008 1500
Fax: +44 0207 839 2417
Email: private.office@fco.gov.uk

c. Write to the Head of Mission of the Yemeni Embassy, HE Mohamed Taha Mustafa and urge him to intercede on behalf of these Yemeni prisoners and to ensure that they receive a fair trial.

Embassy of the Republic of Yemen
HE Mr. Mohamed Taha Mustafa
57 Cromwell Road
London
SW7 2ED

Tel: +44 0207 584 6607
Fax: +44 0207 589 3350
Email: info@yemenembassy.org.uk
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Sample letters are given below for your convenience


Sample Letter to European Commissioner of Human Rights

[Your Name]
[Your Address]


[Date]

Mr. Thomas Hammarberg
Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights
Council of Europe
F-67075 Strasbourg Cedex


Dear Mr. Thomas Hammarberg,

Re: Appeal for Immediate Release of Yemeni prisoners, Mohamed Ahmed Al-Yaremi and Ali Amen Nader

I am writing to you to request the immediate release of the above-mentioned prisoners who were arrested this summer in Yemen.

Mohamed Al-Yaremi and Ali Nader were both arrested at the San'a International Airport for allegedly being followers of Husain Badr Al Din al Houthi, leader of a Shia group 'The Believing Youth.' However, their families have confirmed that they have no connection with this group. Both the prisoners are being kept at secret locations, and it is not even known whether they are alive or not.

Ali Amen Nader had applied for political asylum in Netherlands in March 2002 and Mohamed Ahmed Al Yaremi had applied for political asylum in Italy in May 2003 but both were refused, the former was refused asylum in June 2002 while the latter was refused asylum in December 2003. There is also a huge concern whether these prisoners are being treated in accordance with international human rights standards.

The above cases are not the only ones who have been refused asylum in European countries despite having a credible case and hence they are left with little alternative but to return to their own countries. Thereafter, they are seized by the authorities and mysteriously go missing. I would like to urge you to consider the cases of political asylum seekers with care and thoroughly research their appeals before declining them.

I would like to urge you to request the Yemeni authorities to offer these prisoners a fair trial with full access to independent legal representation. Otherwise, they must be released without delay.

I look forward to hearing from you soon on this matter,


Yours Sincerely,


[Your Signature]

[Your Name]

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Sample letter to Margaret Beckett

[Your Name]
[Your Address]


[Date]

Rt. Hon. Margaret Beckett MP
Foreign & Commonwealth Office
King Charles Street
London
SW1A 2AH


Dear Ms. Beckett,

Re: Appeal for Immediate Release of Yemeni prisoners, Mohamed Ahmed Al-Yaremi and Ali Amen Nader

I am writing to you to request the immediate release of the above-mentioned prisoners who were arrested this summer in Yemen.

Mohamed Al-Yaremi and Ali Nader were both arrested at the San'a International Airport for allegedly being followers of Husain Badr Al Din al Houthi, leader of a Shia group 'The Believing Youth.' However, their families have confirmed that they have no connection with this group. Both the prisoners are being kept at secret locations, and it is not even known whether they are alive or not. There is also a huge concern whether they are being treated in accordance with international human rights standards.

If the Yemeni authorities believe these men to have committed a crime, they need to offer them a fair trial with full access to independent legal representation. Otherwise, they must be released without further delay.

I urge you to request the Yemeni authorities to treat these prisoners according to international human rights standards and to try them or release them.

I look forward to hearing from you soon on this matter,


Yours Sincerely,


[Your Signature]

[Your Name]

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Sample Letter to the Head of Mission of the Embassy of the Republic of Yemen in UK

[Your Name]
[Your Address]


[Date]

HE Mr. Mohamed Taha Mustafa
57 Cromwell Road
London
SW7 2ED


Dear Mr. Mustafa,

Re: Appeal for Immediate Release of Yemeni prisoners, Mohamed Ahmed Al-Yaremi and Ali Amen Nader

I am writing to you to request the immediate release of the above-mentioned prisoners who were arrested this summer in Yemen.

Mohamed Al-Yaremi and Ali Nader were both arrested at the San'a International Airport for allegedly being followers of Husain Badr Al Din al Houthi, leader of a Shia group 'The Believing Youth.' However, their families have confirmed that they have no connection with this group. Both the prisoners are being kept at secret locations, and it is not even known whether they are alive or not. There is also a huge concern whether they are being treated in accordance with international human rights standards.

If the Yemeni authorities believe these men to have committed a crime, they need to offer them a fair trial with full access to independent legal representation. Otherwise, they must be released without further delay.

I urge you to request the Yemeni authorities to treat these prisoners according to international human rights standards and to try them or release them.

I look forward to hearing from you soon on this matter,


Yours Sincerely,


[Your Signature]

[Your Name]

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