Yemen: Authorities must provide immediate medical care to journalist Tawfiq Al-Mansouri, appealing death sentence

13.12.20

Reliable local reports received by the Gulf Centre for Human Rights (GCHR) confirmed that journalist Tawfiq Mohammed Al-Mansouri, who has appealed a death sentence handed down in April 2020, is suffering from a serious deterioration of his health in prison in Sana'a.

A member of his family mentioned that Al-Mansouri was originally suffering from rheumatic heart disease, diabetes, asthma and shortness of breath, prostatitis, and symptoms of kidney failure. Despite all of this, the administration of the Security and Intelligence Prison, where he is imprisoned, continues to deny him the necessary medical treatment and appropriate medicines for his various diseases. This has worsened his health, which has reached the stage of imminent danger.

On his Facebook page, human rights lawyer Abdulmajeed Sabra called on the Public Prosecutor in Sana'a to "assume its legal responsibility," adding, "The authority in place in Sana'a and the Security and Intelligence Service must provide full health care to detainee Tawfiq Al-Mansouri and release him immediately."

On 11 April 2020, the Specialised Criminal Court in the capital, Sana'a, controlled by the de facto authorities, the Houthis, sentenced Al-Mansouri and three fellow journalists, Abdulkhaleq Ahmed Amran, Akram Saleh Al-Walidi, and Al-Hareth Saleh Hamid, to death on two charges of "spying" and "spreading false news". The defense team continues to work on preparing their appeal, which the Public Prosecution is now handling, before submitting it to the Specialised Criminal Court's Appeals Chamber.

The four journalists have been subjected to ill-treatment in the Security and Intelligence Prison and denied regular visits or contact with their families. They face the emotional pain resulting from not seeing their families for a long time in addition to the risk of contracting Covid-19 in an environment that is never conducive to adequate health standards.

For more information, see: https://www.gc4hr.org/news/view/2363

GCHR denounces the Security and Intelligence Prison Administration for its flagrant violation of the United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners (the Nelson Mandela Rules); and for stripping journalist Tawfiq Ahmed Al-Mansouri of his rights as a prisoner, foremost among which is his right to obtain adequate medical care, including access to the medicines he urgently needs.

GCHR also calls on the de facto authorities, the Houthis, to revoke the death sentences issued against journalists Tawfiq Muhammad Al-Mansouri, Abdulkhaleq Ahmed Amran, Akram Saleh Al-Walidiand Al-Hareth Saleh Hamid, and to release them immediately.