Alwaght– Since 2015, Yemen has been under a choking siege of the Saudi-led Arab military coalition, which in March of the same year launched an aggression against the already-impoverished nation. As of now, the course of the war has gone against the coalition’s predictions of capturing the whole country within weeks. The Yemenis, led by Ansarullah movement, have been firmly resisting the unceasing assaults. The alliance not only failed to win but also has received big blows on the ground.
Saudi regime’s abuses against the civilians have been blatant during the past four years, something reflected to the world by the revolutionary authorities but is largely ignored by the international community due to the Western pressures.
The latest report released by the Amnesty International has unveiled crimes of the UAE forces in southern Yemen detention centers. The report came on the heels of a revelation made by the AP news agency on the UAE-run secret prisons in Yemen. Before that, Geneva-based SAM, a human rights center, in early April had revealed UAE-operated secret prisons where the Yemeni prisoners are inhumanely tortured.
The new Amnesty report is a big scandal evidence of the Arab coalition and its Western backers. The news echo revelations about the US-run Abu Ghraib prison, where the Americans brutally tortured the Iraqis during the occupation of Iraq.
Here is a list of the UAE prisons in Yemen:
– Three 5-meter depth underground prisons in Arab Union center in Barga, west of Aden province.
– Bir Ahmed I and II prisons based in a farm belonging to a tribal leader of Agrebi Tribe in Aden city suburbs.
– Al-Rayan prison in Hadhramaut Airport. The airport was turned into a military base and a jail by the coalition forces where hundreds of Yemeni civilians are jailed.
-And other detention centers like Wadhah in the areas controlled by the Emiratis and their local allies.
Shocking reports of torture
On Tuesday, the Amnesty International pointed to the appalling violation of human rights in the UAE’s clandestine prisons in Yemen, saying the systematic torture could amount to war crimes. The report adds that tens are subjected to arbitrary detention and abuse by forces loyal to Abu Dhabi. The Amnesty has called on the UAE leaders to immediately stop their role playing in breaching the Yemeni people’s rights and launch a probe into the case.
The report added that the forces loyal to the resigned president Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi and their UAE backers detained 51 Yemenis between March 2016 and May 2018 of whom 19 are accounted for.
“The families of these detainees find themselves in an endless nightmare where their loved ones have been forcibly disappeared by UAE-backed forces. When they demand to know where their loved ones are held, or if they are even still alive, their requests are met with silence or intimidation,” Tirana Hassan, director of Crisis Response at Amnesty International, told.
Amnesty also pointed to the information obtained by the Human Rights High Commissioner on abuses against the Yemeni prisoners.
“From the initial information that our office in Yemen has managed to gather, we have reason to believe that a number of Yemeni detainees have been subjected to ill-treatment, torture and sexual abuse by UAE soldiers,” Liz Throssell, director of Crisis Response at Amnesty International told the Turkish Anadolu news agency on July 3. The comments unveil a scandal at the center of which is the UAE.
Yemeni resigned government reacts to prisons
The UN human rights office’s report comes while on July 10, the interior minister of the resigned government had called on the UAE to hand over the prisons to the government. It was the first time Interior Minister Ahmed al-Maysari has gone public with the demand in talks with an Emirati official, seeming to contradict the UAE’s repeated denials that it has authority over any prisons in Yemen.
Al-Maysari, meeting UAE Minister for International Cooperation Rim al-Hashemi, stressed the necessity to shut down the prisons and put them under the authority of the Yemeni judiciary and prosecution, media reports said.
The demands by the Hadi government’s official highlights the reality of a flawed strategy followed by the fugitive government. In fact, Hadi’s call for the Arab coalition’s military intervention in his country to repel the revolutionary forces was the root cause of the current crisis in Yemen. The Arab coalition’s abuses are more exposing Hadi and allies to a legitimacy crisis. So, Hadi is resorting to sham measures, including the demand to hand the prisons back to the government authorities in a bid to cover up his strategy flaws both in politics and on the ground.
Abu Dhabi reaction to report
The UAE government, already under public pressures for occupying and looting natural resources of the Socotra Island of Yemen, stated on Thursday that the prisons are under Yemen government’s control. The UAE regime issued a statement claiming that the report was “politically-motivated” and was aimed at striking the UAE efforts within the Arab coalition to support the legal Yemeni government. The reaction only rejected Abu Dhabi involvement in running the prisons and did not deny that there were secret detention complexes in the war-ravaged country.
Mounting Arab coalition scandals amid ongoing crimes in Yemen
The Amnesty International’s report has another aspect: It very well discredited the claims by the coalition about the attempts to put an end to Yemen war. The alliance waged a war against Yemen in March 2015, claiming its aim was to defend the Yemenis’ rights and protect the country from sway of Iran-backed local parties. But the recent UN report now give publicity to the heinous crimes against the humanity in Yemen.
The report deals a blow to the validity and legitimacy of the Arab bloc on the international stage on the one hand and proves to be a scandal to Western governments who supported the alliance since the beginning. Motivated by interests in Saudi Arabia and other Arab states, the US-led West over the past years has closed its eyes to the war-caused humanitarian crisis, represented by famine, displacement, and fatal disease spread. The Western silence exposes the West’s adoption of a double-standard pro-rights policy, mainly governed by interests. All in all, the report indicates a massive defeat of the Arab alliance and its Western patrons.