Four journalists in Yemen sentenced to death for 'collaborating' with Saudi-led coalition
Sana'a [Yemen], April 12 (ANI): A court of Houthi rebels in Yemen sentenced four journalists to death for allegedly collaborating with the Saudi-led coalition that has been fighting the Houthis since 2015, according to the journalists' lawyer.
The court sentenced four journalists to death for "treason" and "espionage", Arab News reported.
The four were among a group of 10 journalists who were detained by the rebels on accusation of them collaborating with "the enemy".
Their lawyer said that Abdel-Khaleq Amran, Akram al-Walidi, Hareth Hamid and Tawfiq al-Mansouri were the four journalists who were sentenced to death.
According to their lawyer, the other six journalists were also charged for the same reasons and an additional charge of spreading fake news to aid the coalition. However, they were ordered to be released after serving the time.
Amnesty International last year had called the charges "trumped-up". The rights group said the detained reporters were beaten, deprived of water and forced to hold cinder blocks for several hours.
Nine journalists were arrested in a raid on a hotel in Sana'a in June 2015 while the tenth was nabbed from his home in the Yemeni capital that August.
Yemen has been engulfed in a civil war since 2014, when the Houthis took control of the country's north, including its capital.
The Houthi rebels according to Saudi Arabia are Iran-backed militias who are loyal to the ex-President Ali Abdullah Saleh who was forced to quit after the 2011 Arab Spring uprising.
The situation in Yemen is getting out of control as the coronavirus cases peak in the war-torn region.
The United Nations (UN) envoys in the Middle East have urged all parties involved in different wars in the region to immediately cease the hostilities to tackle the COVID-19 outbreak.
In a statement on Saturday, the envoys for Syria, Yemen, Lebanon, Iraq, and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict have stressed the need for solidarity required to fight a pandemic of this magnitude.
There are more than 134,000 confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the Middle East, including over 5,300 fatalities. Some 4,100 of those deaths are in Iran, which has the largest outbreak in the region. Authorities there have recorded more than 66,000 total cases. (ANI)