Houthis Arrest Dozens of UN, Aid Workers

Ongoing arrest campaigns in Houthi-controlled areas in Yemen (Local Media)
Ongoing arrest campaigns in Houthi-controlled areas in Yemen (Local Media)
TT

Houthis Arrest Dozens of UN, Aid Workers

Ongoing arrest campaigns in Houthi-controlled areas in Yemen (Local Media)
Ongoing arrest campaigns in Houthi-controlled areas in Yemen (Local Media)

The Houthis in Yemen have arrested dozens of employees from United Nations agencies and international humanitarian organizations, including women, in Sanaa and other cities.

The wave of arrests highlights a widespread crackdown by the group on humanitarian efforts, government and human rights sources told Asharq Al-Awsat.

On Thursday, the Houthis detained around 35 humanitarian workers in Sanaa, Hajjah, Hodeidah, Amran, and Saada.

The arrests are continuing, affecting over 15 staff members from UN offices, the US National Democratic Institute, and other international organizations.

The arrests of several UN and NGO employees were staged by the Houthi group’s Security and Intelligence Service.

The arrests include six workers from the UN Human Rights Office in Hajjah, Hodeidah, and Sanaa, three from the UN Humanitarian Affairs Office, and three from the US National Democratic Institute.

There are also reports of a UN Envoy’s office employee being detained in Sanaa.

Additionally, two workers from a local Yemeni organization were arrested, one of whom was stopped while traveling to Ibb with his family. Another detainee is an employee of the NGO Deep Root, along with his wife and children.

Activists and organization workers have also reported that some colleagues have gone missing. Those detained face torture and accusations of espionage, with possible death sentences if tried.

Houthi security forces reportedly raided the homes of humanitarian workers, searching their bedrooms, phones, relatives’ phones, and personal computers without revealing the charges.

Sources report that the Houthi group’s crackdown is ongoing, with efforts to locate and arrest former employees of specific UN and international organizations. The campaign has also targeted accounting firms working for these organizations.

In a similar crackdown in October 2021, the Houthis arrested local staff from the US Embassy in Yemen, with eleven still in detention. Houthi leaders have insinuated that the detainees were spies for the United States.



Sudan, Iran Exchange Ambassadors after 8-Year Rupture

Al-Burhan received the credentials of the Iranian ambassador (Sovereignty Council website)
Al-Burhan received the credentials of the Iranian ambassador (Sovereignty Council website)
TT

Sudan, Iran Exchange Ambassadors after 8-Year Rupture

Al-Burhan received the credentials of the Iranian ambassador (Sovereignty Council website)
Al-Burhan received the credentials of the Iranian ambassador (Sovereignty Council website)

The head of the Sovereignty Council, Commander of the Sudanese Army, Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan, received, on Sunday, the credentials of Hassan Shah, the new Iranian Ambassador in Sudan, after more than 8 years of complete estrangement between the two countries.
In press statements, the Undersecretary of the Sudanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Hussein Al-Amin, pointed to the “beginning of a new phase of bilateral relations,” and stressed strong ties between Sudan and Iran.
He added: “The President of the Sovereignty Council welcomed the new ambassador of Iran.”
In turn, the Iranian ambassador said that submitting his credentials “comes within the framework of the common consensus between the two countries regarding the exchange of ambassadors and the promotion of bilateral relations.” He added that he would do his “utmost to strengthen cooperation relations between the Islamic Republic of Iran and Sudan.”
He also noted that his country “supports national sovereignty and the territorial integrity of Sudan.”
In October, Sudan announced the resumption of diplomatic relations with Iran following meetings between officials in the two countries, which lasted for months.
The new rapprochement began during talks between their foreign ministers in Azerbaijan, in July 2023, on the sidelines of the meeting of the Ministerial Committee of the Non-Aligned Movement.
In June 2016, the government of deposed Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir announced that it was severing its relations with Iran and expelling its ambassador from Khartoum.