Free Hisham – The last: Yemen War Mosaic 340

Free Hisham Al-Omeisy!! Lasst Hisham Al-Omeisy frei!! Das ist vorläufig das letzte Jemenkrieg-Mosaik. Warum? / Free Hisham Al-Omeisy!! This temporarily is the last Yemen War Mosaic. Why?
Bei diesem Beitrag handelt es sich um ein Blog aus der Freitag-Community

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28.8.2017 – BBC (** A P)

The silencing of a Yemeni social media star

When the Twitter account of a prominent Yemeni political commentator and high-profile social media user fell silent on 14 August, it did not go unnoticed.

Hisham Al-Omeisy is usually a prolific tweeter, known for his updates, in both English and Arabic, about the social and humanitarian crisis in his country.

The 38-year-old has around 25,000 followers, among them many international media outlets, journalists and humanitarian workers who turn to him for insights about what's happening within Yemen.

So when his account suddenly went quiet, those who have come to rely on him for valuable information, quickly knew something was wrong.

Al-Omeisy has been critical of both sides of the war in Yemen.

So what was it that resulted in Al-Omeisy's social media silence?

His last tweet, on 13 August, the day before he was detained, spoke of "armed goons" turning up outside his door at his home in Sanaa.

A few hours after that tweet a close friend posted that Al-Omeisy was seen being taken away in a convoy of three cars full of armed people, in an area controlled by Houthi rebels.

Both Human Rights Watch and Amnesty have issued statements calling on the Houthis to release him.

Following Al-Omeisy's detention, thousands of his followers and social activists started an online campaign demanding his release.

Several thousand have used the hashtag #FreeHisham.

Yemeni activists also told BBC Trending that Al-Omeisy's arrest has made them more cautious about what they say on social media.

"There has been huge self-censorship after Hisham was arrested," Afrah Nasser, an activist based in Sweden, told BBC Trending, "It's very very scary actually because the more silenced people are, the less we know..."

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Omeisys letzter Tweet: Bewaffnete erscheinen vor seinem Haus

Omeisy's last tweet: Gunmen show up at his door

Twitter hashtag #FreeHisham

(English text below)

Dieses „Jemenkrieg-Mosaik“ wird vorläufig das letzte sein. Und es stellt nur noch diesen einen Artikel der BBC vor. Die Huthis haben in Sanaa vor 15 Tagen den Blogger Hisham Al-Omeisy, „die Stimme des Jemen“, verschleppt und verschwinden lassen.

Er ist ein unabhängiger Kopf, der mit viel Intelligenz und Geist, oft mit viel Hintersinn, ja sogar trotz der furchtbaren Situation mit Humor und Witz uns im Westen „Jemen erkärt hat“, so ein Unterstützer. 25.000 „Follower“ haben auf Twitter seine Tweets gelesen, 42,500 Tweets hat Hisham Al-Omeisy schon geschrieben.

Es ist nicht bekannt, was mit Hisham Al-Omeisy in der Zwischenzeit geschehen ist.

Diese Attacke der Huthis auf eine unabhängige Berichterstattung kann ich nicht einfach so hinnehmen. Ich stelle deshalb meine Arbeit am „Jemenkrieg-Mosaik“ vorläufig ein.

Das nächste „Jemenkrieg-Mosaik“ wird erscheinen,wenn die Freilassung von Hisham Al-Omeisy glaubhaft berichtet wird und er seine ersten Tweets nach der Freilassung geschrieben hat.

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This „Yemen War Mosaic“ will be the last one, at least the last one for the time being. And the BBC report announced above is the only report presented in this Yemen War Mosaic. For the time being, I will stop now. Why?

It is more than two weeks now: On August 14, in the afternoon, at Sanaa Hisham Al-Omeisy was abducted and detained by Houthi gunmen, as described above. He was brought to the building of the NSB, the National Security Bureau.

And there are no news from him. The Yemeni journalist Nasser Arrabyee, a follower of ex-president Saleh, has asked for Hisham a Houthi official known to him. Nasser was told that there would be a „problem“ and that he could „meet“ Hisham soon. But nothing seems to have happened.

Hisham Al-Omeisy is one of the most important, most influental and most heard voices of today's Yemen – on the international stage. At Twitter, 25,000 followers are reading his tweets – up to now, he wrote 42,400 tweets!

Hisham spoke to those who are interested in Yemen also by films and articles. He was „the voice of Yemen“ in a world that otherwise cared little, he „explained Yemen and the Yemen war to us“, as international supporters wrote.

He described Saudi coalition air raids to an international audience, from Sanaa where he was stuck and terrified himself, together with his family.

He spoke with an independent and critical mind, often with ulterior motives, and – even in such a horrible situation – with humour and wit.

„With an independent and critical mind“ - that implies that he mostly was critical against the Saudi coalition, their Yemeni puppets, the terrible bombing war, the blockade, but also against the Houthis, their corruption and their political dullness.

Now the Houthis have preferred to silence this „voice of Yemen“ which spoke to the outside world. It seems they could not stand „an independent and critical mind“.

The detention of Hisham Al-Omeisy has been labeled as a „PR Disaster“ for the Houthis. They did not care – even regarding the plenty of international reactions which showed what an enormous „PR Disaster“ this detention actually is. They do not care.

The outrage in social media, from Yemen itself and international, was enormous. Hisham's case was supported from inside Yemen – mostly by those who had been quite critical against the Saudi coalition and more favorite to the Houthis! - and from all over the world, also by those who mostly are critical against the Saudi and Western interference in Yemen.

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Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch had demanded to release him. The Houthis did not care.

In the case of Western media, I always had claimed that a real independent journalism would be absolutely essential in order that the Yemen war and the Yemen disaster get the necessary attention and reporting. But up to now, the Yemen case did not get that – as in the case of Yemen, the independence of Western mainstream journalism reaches its limits. However you turn it, in the case of Yemen the USA and their Western allies are doing badly -and the Yemen story never will fit to any Western propaganda bias. Thus, the Yemen war is and stays mostly neglected.

Thus, a voice as the one of Hisham Al-Omeisy would have been even more important. But the Houthis did not care.

My own intention when compiling 350 webpages showing the impact and the victims of Saudi air raids and 339 „Yemen War Mosaics“ was to make known to a Western public the Yemen war, the Yemen humanitarian disaster, the war crimes of those who were supported by ourselves in the West - and for which the West itself bears a great part of responsibility. The „Yemen War Mosaics“ tried to collect a lot of material to give a comprehensive and detailed picture of what happened in Yemen.

I fear I actually had little chance to succeed – but I had tried to be one part of such an „independent journalism“ which the case of Yemen needs so much.

Well, it's obvious that in Yemen, people like the Houthis do not at all care for „free journalism“ and for those giving Yemen a voice to which others around the world are listening.

Hisham Al-Omeisy unfortunately is not the only Yemeni journalist who has been abducted, detained, imprisoned and even tortured by the Houthis. Might-be, he is the best, the most known, the most heard. Who knows.

The newest case is Abdul Rahim Mohsen, abducted and detained in southern Taiz one week ago, just a few days later in coma after having been tortured. The most horrible case is Yahya Aljubaihi, detained in September 2016 and sentenced to death in a farce of trial.

When compiling my „Yemen War Mosaics“, I myself had tried to keep an objective position. That implies that apart from the Saudi coalition's horrific war crimes and crimes against humanity – and the Western support for all these crimes – also crimes committed by the Houthis and their allies had to be mentioned.

Being aware of this Houthi brutality and dullness, I temporarily stop „Yemen War Mosaics“ now. This stop is my protest against the way the Houthis treat an independent and important voice like Hisham-Al Omeisy.

This does not mean that from now on I will no more care for what is happening in Yemen. And I will continue my „Yemen War Mosaics“ when things get better – at least in the case of Hisham Al-Omeisy.

The next „Yemen War Mosaic“ will be the one presenting serious reports on Hisham Al-Omeisy's release and the first tweets he wrote after having been released.

I still hope Hisham Al-Omeisy will be released soon.

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Frühere Berichterstattung über Hisham Al-Omeisy

Earlier reporting about Hisham Al-Omeisy:

25.8.2017 – The London Economic (** A P)

Free Hisham Al-Omeisy, the Voice of Yemen

18.8.2017 – CBC Radio (** A P)

Outspoken Yemeni activist Hisham Al-Omeisy abducted and detained by Houthi forces

18.8.2017 – Human Rights Watch (** A P)

Yemen: Houthis Detain Prominent Activist

Free Hisham Al-Omeisy and Others Held Arbitrarily

18.8.2017 – Human Rights Watch (** A P)

Yemen: Activist detained by Huthi-Saleh forces in escalating crackdown on critics must be freed

18.8.2017 – ABC News (* A P)

Amnesty calls on Houthi rebels to immediately release Yemeni activist Hisham Al-Omeisy =

18.8.2017 – Aljazeera (* A P)

Yemen's Houthi rebels arrest activist Hisham al-Omeisy

18.8.2017 – Middle East Eye (* A P)

Prominent Yemeni activist detained by Houthis in Sanaa

18.8.2017 – Washington Post (* A P)

Outspoken documenter of Yemen conflict detained by Houthis =

08:11 29.08.2017
Dieser Beitrag gibt die Meinung des Autors wieder, nicht notwendigerweise die der Redaktion des Freitag.
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Dietrich Klose

Vielfältig interessiert am aktuellen Geschehen, zur Zeit besonders: Ukraine, Russland, Jemen, Rolle der USA, Neoliberalismus, Ausbeutung der 3. Welt
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Dietrich Klose