Not all released prisoners are equal. Prison exchange triggers fury

Not all released prisoners are equal. Prison exchange triggers fury


By Sarah Hassan

The exchange of hundreds of prisoners between the government and the Houthi theocratic militants on Thursday triggered wide fury over the torture of prisoners in jails.

A large number of government officials and social media users condemned the deal as “unfair” in terms of the difference in the health conditions of released prisoners on both sides.   

Deputy Human Rights Minister Majed Fadhayel said that the governmental prisoners “suffer terrible health conditions including permanent disabilities and chronic diseases as  a result of the torture they were subjected to in the Houthi militia-run jails and detention centers” unlike the Houthi backers released by the government.

In a facebook post that attracted 200 likes, Nabil Qayed said: “Most of the released pro-government prisoners were civilians including journalists who had been kidnapped from their homes and workplaces in Sana’a and other cities, whereas the pro-Houthi prisoners are radical fighters who were injured and arrested in the battlefield. Furthermore, the Houthis received their militants in Sana’a Airport with all of them in their best health conditions with every militant has springs in his steps. On the other hand the pro-government’s prisoners have arrived in the airport of Sayoon with almost all of them seen gaunt and frail. They went down the areophane’s stairs with the aid of crutches.”

“Not all prisoners are equal,” posted female activist Nadya Abdullah on facebook with an attached picture of the disabled pro-government prisoners. God curse you Abdulmalik Al-Houthi and your supporters.”

The Houthi theocratic militia persistently tortures detainees to disabilities and death, and in the past two months alone, released two prisoners already dead of torture. 

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