Friday, February 18, 2011

Human Rights Watch Criticizes Using Violence against Protesters

Human Rights Watch Criticizes Using Violence against Protesters

By Fatik Al-Rodaini

In a statement posted on its website on Friday, the Human Rights Watch said that Yemen’s security forces attacked demonstrators, activists, lawyers, and journalists in Sana'a, the capital, on February 14, 2011, apparently without justification.

The statement added that the Human Rights Watch and other witnesses observed the attacks, most of them during a protest that began at Sana'a University. A number of local journalists were beaten by the security forces and groups of government supporters and plainclothes security men arrested, assaulted, and confiscated the materials of international journalists, including a BBC Arabic correspondent.

The organization confirmed that the government security forces appeared to be organizing groups of armed pro-government supporters to assault the anti-government protesters, although in some cases the police on the spot prevented clashes.

In one case the organized government supporters appeared to include children.

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