Geneva; SAM Organization for Rights and Liberties, called today, Monday, May 11, 2020, the Saudi Arabia to release immediately the Yemeni militants who were forcibly disappeared at the southern border by the Saudi intelligence service while returning on vacation to Yemen.
The Geneva-based organization said in a press statement that it had received reports and testimonies on detention of fighters by Saudi forces in a school for 14 days on the pretext of quarantine, after protests by dozens of them demanding the payment of their salaries that were delayed for several months.
The organization stated that the fighters reported that upon their return to Yemen, members of the Saudi intelligence services intercepted them and arrested 15 to 20 of them, after identifying them, and transferred them to the police headquarters in Jizan, known as (Military Intelligence).
According to the testimony of one of the returning fighters, to SAM “We were on the buses heading to Al-Wade’a port, and the detainees were on one bus, where they were gathered in one bus before leaving Saudi Arabia, and after we moved from Jizan, they stopped the bus and took it to the headquarters of the police forces in Jizan, what is known as “Military Intelligence”, and they said we will check you again, so they took down about twenty people who called them by name, then they asked the bus driver to proceed, and the rest of the recruits knew only when reached Al-Wade’a, and we told them about the arrest of our friends.)
SAM confirmed that it maintains the names of the officers and soldiers who were arrested by the Saudi forces and fears that their detention comes as a retaliatory reaction to them because of their demands for their salaries, and protest in Jizan in against ill-treatment, and concern of being tortured.
SAM added that it had received information about the condition of the soldiers held in solitary confinement, which are consistent with the repeated testimonies documented by the organization during the past period, about former detainees who were forcibly disappeared for long periods, and were subjected to severe torture and degrading treatment by Yemeni forces loyal to Saudi Arabia or the intelligence services.
SAM stated that it has detailed testimonies that will be issued in a comprehensive report on the situation of arrested and wounded soldiers in the southern border, many of whom are deported to prisons and intelligence headquarters to investigate malicious charges without guaranteeing the minimum legal rights.
Tawfiq Al-Humeidi, head of SAM organization, said that the Saudi authorities should immediately release all detainees in its prisons and reveal their fate and whereabouts.
Al-Humeidi pointed out that SAM had previously issued a report entitled "The Holocaust of Borders", yet the situation became more disturbing, whether they were civilians or military personnel, and that the organization has dozens of reports, including officers and fighters in the southern border, who protested against the salary cuts or who disappeared after the Battle of (Aal Jubara) since August 2019, without obtaining accurate information about the fate of their relatives.
SAM emphasized that international human rights law protects basic rights, including the right to non-arbitrary detention, enforced disappearance, and torture, whereby the Convention for the Protection of Persons from Enforced Disappearance is defined, as people who are forcibly disappeared are more likely to be tortured because they are at the mercy of their captors outside the protection of the law, and there are no Formal guarantees require that a person meet with a third party on a regular basis, for example, a judge.
SAM Organization for Rights and Liberties, Geneva
May 11, 2020