PFIF Report Condemns Saudi_UAE Assassinations Prominent Figures In Yemen
PARIS – The Paris Francophone Institute for Freedoms (PFIF) issued a report Monday condemning the systematic assassinations of important figures in Yemen and the Saudi-UAE alliance.
PFIF said in its report that the Yemeni cities have witnessed systematic assassinations over the past three years and rise to war crimes and require an extensive international investigation to prosecute the perpetrators and bring them to international justice.
PFIF noted to the assassination of Zaki Al-Salqadi, a member of the Yemeni Rally Party, who was assassinated in the southern Yemeni province of Dhala city on September 5.
Salqadi is a member of the political circle of the Islah party in Dhala and a journalist at a local pro-party press site.
The head of the branch of the Islah Charitable Society for Social Welfare, Mohammed Al- Shujainah was found dead yesterday afternoon hours after he was kidnapped by gunmen outside his home in the district of Attawahi.
Local sources said Al-Shajainah’s body was found inside a car in the KhorMaksar district. Sources said he was blindfolded and had been tortured.
Days earlier social media users had circulated a video clip showing the assassination of prominent Imam in Aden, Sheikh Abdulrahman Al-Omrani, in broad daylight.
Some parties accuse the United Arab Emirates of plotting the assassinations in Aden, saying they have have been systematically carried out against scholars, advocates and political figures known for supporting President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi and rejecting the UAE’s involvement in the Yemen conflict.
On 20 July 2018, the leader of Yemeni Islah party, Sadiq Ahmed, was wounded in an assassination attempt after being shot by gunmen in Aden.
On 16 May 2018, the well-known academic Najat Ali Moqbel, Dean of the Faculty of Science in Aden, was killed with her son and granddaughter when a gunman stormed the apartment in which they lived.
PFIF elaborated in its report that Aden, the interim capital of the legitimate government of Yemen, is witnessing a wave of violence that has continued since its liberation three years ago and is under the control of UAE. Aden inhabitants are afraid of the wave of assassinations and the weakness of the city security.
The report noted that the recorded assassinations, especially in Aden, took place in a deliberate manner for prominent figures known as their positions opposed to the Saudi-UAE alliance, in light of unofficial statistics indicating the killing of about 400 people in Aden during the past two years, including many imams of mosques and political activists.
The report pointed out that most of the assassinated members belong to the mainstream and the Islamic Reform “Islah” Party, which is opposed to the UAE and is a key partner in the Saudi-led military alliance in Yemen since March 2015.
The conflict in Yemen has been escalating since Saudi Arabia and UAE interfered at the head of a military alliance to support the internationally recognized government of President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi after the Huthi-backed rebels managed to take control of vast areas of the country, including the capital Sanaa. Since the Saudi-UAE intervention, 10,000 people had been killed and53,000 had been injured.
Aden is suffering from the multiplicity of security agencies which is not related to any government body. Its security is led by Shalal Shayeh, the anti-terrorism forces is led by Yusran Al-Maqtari, both loyal to the “Transitional Council of the South” against the legitimate government backed by the UAE.
The report pointed out that the largest armed groups in Aden are the forces of the “security belt”, which controls the security file in the city. It includes a diverse group of Yemeni officers, soldiers and activists of the southern movement and known by its loyalty to the UAE.
As the report asserted, the widespread security imbalance in Aden is mainly due to the multiplicity of militias controlling the city, especially the military and security units backed by the UAE, militias that are not official security services and not part of the Yemeni Ministry of Interior.
It confirmed that the deteriorating security situation had led to an increase in the crime rate of organized crime, both in their traditional and organized sense, as well as terrorism, political crime and acts of vandalism against or between different parties.
The report noted that the assassinations that were recorded during that period in Aden or Taiz had carefully selected the victims of the leaders known for their positions against the Saudi-UAE alliance. This means that the goal is to weaken the legitimacy itself and undermine the public base and the destruction of state institutions.
The report monitored the most prominent assassinations in Yemen since 2014:
• February 20, 2014: Sheikh Ali bin Salem bin Yaqoub Bawazir, the imam of the Maayan Mosque and the head of the Al-Rawda Charitable Society, was assassinated as he went out to perform the evening prayers at Gail Bawazeer in Hadramout.
• July 2015: Sheik Bashar Al-Salafi, the imam of Al-Hasani mosque in Lahj province, survived an assassination attempt by unknown assailants and was injured.
• January 2016: Sheikh Ali Osman Al-Jilani was assassinated when he left his mosque after dawn prayers in the Kreiter district of Aden.
• • February 20, 2014: Sheikh Ali bin Salem bin Yaqoub Bawazir, the imam of the Maayan Mosque and the head of the Al-Rawda Charitable Society, was assassinated as he went out to perform the evening prayers at Gail Bawazeer in Hadramout.
• • July 2015: Sheik Bashar al-Salafi, the imam of Al-Hasani mosque in Lahj province, survived an assassination attempt by unknown assailants and was injured.
• • January 2016: Gunmen assassinate Sheikh Ali Osman al-Jilani as he leaves his mosque after dawn prayers in the Kreiter district of Aden.
• • January 31, 2016: Gunmen assassinated Sheikh Samhan Abdul Aziz Al-Rawi, known as Sheikh Rawi Imam and preacher of Ibn al-Qayyim mosque in Aden, where he was found dead in the Sulawan area. Shaykh Al-Rawi, a leader of the Popular Resistance who had a role in confronting the Houthi militias, Was a member of a local council in the Brega region of Aden and a staff member of the Fish Institute, a prominent Salafi advocate.
• • February 2016: Unknown gunmen killed Salafist cleric Sheikh Abdul Rahman al-Adani in Aden city. Al-Adani was killed as he left his house and went to the mosque in the area of Al-Fyush on the northern outskirts of Aden after gunmen shot him in the car and died on his arrival at the hospital. Al-Adani oversaw Dar Al-Hadith in Feuish, a religious education centre with local and foreign students.
• • April 23, 2016: Unknown gangsters killed the head of the Reform Shura Council in Dhamar, Sheikh Hassan Al-Yari. Local sources then said gunmen on a motorbike shot Yari in front of his house in Dhamar city under the authority of the Houthis before fleeing.
• • July 5, 2016: Sheikh Abed Al-Khateeb, Imam of Al-Faruk mosque was assassinated by unknown gunmen.
• • July 23, 2016: Gunmen killed Sheikh Abdulrahman Al-Zahri, Imam of Al-Rahman Mosque in Mansoura City, Aden. Sources in the city said that the incident took place after the dawn prayer and that the perpetrators used a pistol Katma sound.
• • August 3, 2016: Sheikh Thabit Al-Hilali (65 years old) was killed after leaving Fajr prayer in Lahj province. He is the imam and preacher of Al-Habailin Mosque
• • August 15, 2016: Unknown gunmen assassinated Sheikh Saleh Halis, leader of Islah Party and Khatib Al-Rida Mosque in Mansoura, Aden Governorate. Witnesses said gunmen on a motorcycle fired him.
• • August 10, 2017: Abdul Razzaq Al-Sarari, head of the reform branch of al-Haddah district in Dhamar province, was killed by an improvised explosive device that was placed near his house while he was performing Al-Asr prayer and led to his immediate death.
• • October 10, 2017: Sheikh Yassin Al-Husabi Al-Adani, imam and preacher of Zayed Mosque, was killed in an explosion by unknown assaulters in his car near the house of his relative in Abdel Aziz al-Wali district in Aden.
• • October 18, 2017: Sheikh Fahad Al-Yunisi Imam and preacher of the Sahaba Mosque in Mansoura while he goes.
• • October 28, 2017: Gunmen assassinated Shaikh Adel al-Shehri, imam and preacher of the Saad bin Abi Waqas mosque in the residential city of Enmaa in Mansoura district while heading for Fajr prayer. In addition, the report monitored the assassination of more than 30 activists in the Islamic Reform Party In 2018 including advocates and imams of mosques.
Paris Francophone Institute for Freedoms (PFIF) concluded at the end of its report that homicide was a grave violation of international law, international humanitarian law and the Geneva Conventions.
It confirmed at the United Nations Principles on Effective Prevention prohibited extrajudicial executions under any pretext, even wartime. According to the first principle, “Governments must legally prohibit all extrajudicial executions and ensure that any such acts are war crimes under their criminal laws. And shall be punished by appropriate penalties which consider the seriousness of such crimes. No internal political circumstances or any other state of emergency may be invoked as a justification for carrying out such executions.
PFIF elaborated that assassinations were considered extrajudicial executions as war crimes under international law because of the policy of assassinations that was not justified and violated the principle of a fair and public trial of any convicted person. Article VI of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC) states in 1998 that the killing of grpup-members is considered as a genocide, under article 7, considers deliberate murder as a crime against humanity.