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Int'l press body condemns media violations in Yemen by Houthis

BRUSSELS, Jan 16 (KUNA) -- The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) denounced Tuesday the 300 violations against journalists, media workers, media houses and websites reported in Yemen during 2017.
The IFJ in a press release, referring to the annual report by the Yemeni Journalists' Syndicate, said that the Houthis rebel group committed 68 percent of the total violations, while 18 percent are attributed to the governmental and its agencies.
There were other unknown non-state actors who are responsible for nine percent of media restrictions. Other groups such as the Southern Movement and Ansar Al-Sharia were involved in abuse by one percent.
Last year, journalists faced many forms of abuse such as threats and incitement, seizure of media equipment, suspensions from work, unpaid salaries, expulsions and denial of access for covering current events.
The report also showed 103 cases of kidnappings and arrests. Fourteen journalists were kidnapped and are currently held in detention, 13 out of them in Houthi's custody for more than two years.
IFJ General Secretary Anthony Bellanger said: "We call on the United Nations General Secretary and his envoy to Yemen to take these outrageous violations seriously and urge all parties involved in the war in Yemen to enforce United Nations Security Council's resolutions which protect journalists in Yemen." On 22 December, the IFJ sent a letter to Prime Minister of Yemen, Ahmad bin Daghr, demanding accountability for those who committed crimes against journalists and appropriate actions to guarantee journalists' professional and social rights.
The Brussels-based IFJ represents around 600,000 journalists in 146 countries. (end) nk.bs