Yemen’s Houthi militia has taken a number of professors at the University of Sanaa, who were detained for several days, to a prison without any charges, after rejecting appeals to release them, according to sources from the families of the kidnapped professors, Al Arabiya reported.
The Houthis kidnapped six professors at the Naqil Yaslah checkpoint outside Sanaa when they were heading to Aden to receive their salaries that the militia had looted two years ago from the government.
Faculty members were reportedly questioned for a long time before being detained. Amna Yousif was one of the detained professors, and the Houthis had detained her daughter as well. Yousif was later released, but the militia detained and imprisoned her husband instead.
Yousif called for her husband Farouk Abdulmalek Al Hathrami’s release who she says is “diabetic and must take his insulin injections, and he has not been accused of anything.”
She added, “My husband is not a university professor. I am a university professor and my colleagues and I agreed to collect our salaries from Aden after we were burdened with debt, poverty, and the responsibilities we have towards our families. We have not received our salaries in Sanaa for three years.”
Sources within the families confirmed that they were not allowed to visit the detainees and expressed fears of their relatives being tortured.
The Ministry of Human Rights in Yemen, in a statement on Sunday said the Houthi militia is responsible for the life and safety of the faculty members at the University of Sanaa, and considered the incident “a continuation of the crimes of murder, liquidation, kidnapping and enforced disappearance.”
The ministry called on the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, UN organizations and the Red Cross to pressure the militia to release the professors and all those who were arbitrarily detained.
The university and other academic organizations also condemned the militia for detaining the faculty members without any charges.
The teaching union at the University of Sanaa confirmed that among the kidnapped were the Deputy Dean of the College of Education for Student Affairs Khaled Mohammed Abdulsatar al-Shimary, and the Head of the Social Studies Department in the College of Education Abdulbaqi Mohamed Abdu al-Nahary.
The union condemned these practices, which violate the constitution and the law and called on relevant authorities to protect and push for the release of the university’s professors so they can perform their duties under Yemen’s current circumstances.