Yemen: Still No News from Student Arrested by Government Forces Almost 4 Years Ago for Participation in Anti-Government Protests
On 5 May 2012, 22-year-old student Rachid Qasim Mohamed Ali Yahya Al Daifi was arrested during a raid by the police forces in Sanaa's Tahrir Square and brought to an unknown location. Having not heard from him since, and exhausted all remedies at the national level, his family contacted Alkarama, who submitted his case, on 28 January, to the United Nations Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances (WGEID), hoping that this mechanism for the protection and promotion of human rights could help shed light on Al Daifi's fate and whereabouts.
Eye witnesses and other victims of the same raid later released said the reason behind their arrest was their alleged participation in anti-government protests, and that the plainclothes officers who arrested them were under the control of former President Ali Abdulah Saleh. As to Al Daifi, he would have last been seen in 2013 at the Criminal Investigation Department in Saada, which is under the control of the Houthi forces.
After Al Daifi's went missing, his family filed complaints with Yemen's Ministry of Human Rights of and Ministry of Interior, as well as inquired about his whereabouts at the Criminal Investigation Department in Sanaa, but none of these authorities was able to disclose Al Daifi's whereabouts. They also seized the National Organization for Defending Rights and Freedoms (HOOD), a Yemeni NGO of lawyers and activists seeking the equal application of the law for all Yemeni citizens, without any success.
Drawn attention to Al Daifi's disappearance almost four years ago, Alkarama submitted his case to the Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances (WGEID), requesting this UN Special Procedure on human rights to call upon the Yemeni authorities to release him or, at the very least, to disclose his whereabouts, put him under the protection of the law and give his family unrestricted access to visit him.
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