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Yemeni journalists attacked

Wednesday 07 Sep 2011
The Committee to Protect Journalists is disturbed by Monday’s attack on two Yemeni journalists by a group of armed men.

Abdul al-Hafeez al-Hatami, correspondent for the news website Al-Sahwa Net, and Raafat al-Amiri, cameraman for Suhail TV, were covering the rising oil prices in the Al-Duha district in the western province of Hobeidah when they were attacked by a group of armed men, Al-Sahwa Net reported.

The assailants confiscated the journalists’ camera and returned it only after a local tribe intervened and negotiated with the attackers.

On August 28, BBC reporter Abdallah Ghoraib and cameraman Zein al-Saqaaf were attacked by five armed thugs while they were covering a protest against oil and electricity outages in Sana’a, the news website News Yemen reported. The group of men interrogated the reporters on what they were filming and then beat them and destroyed their camera.

“These attacks underscore how dangerous it is for journalists in Yemen,” said CPJ Deputy Director Robert Mahoney. “We call on all sides to respect journalists and allow them to continue their work unharmed and without threat. Journalists are civilians and must be treated as such.”

On August 12, Ahmed Firas, a cameraman for Suhail TV, was arrested by government forces and his equipment was confiscated, CPJ reported. In May, government forces attacked the Suhail TV office, destroying computers, cameras, and the station’s archives. Multiple Suhail TV staff members have received death threats, local journalists told CPJ.