Friday, July 29, 2005

Petition for a Yemeni Kid

Criticizing Saleh's regime is like shooting fish in a barrel, but few things irk me more than the targeting of kids. As previously discussed, the kidnapping and imprisonment of kids is used both as a punishment against adult relatives and as a tactic of intimidation against reformers and critics.

In todays mailbag from Yemen, we find THIS PETITION for Ibrahim al-Saiani, 14 year old boy in prison (without charges since May) in need of medical treatmen and near death.

There's lots of kids in jail, maybe they picked this one because his medical condition is so grave. Maybe because there is an Amnesty International Alert on him, which helps a lot.

I wrote about Ibrahim in my last article:
The jailing of children is common. Amnesty International recently issued an urgent alert pertaining to Ibrahim al-Saiani, a 14-year-old boy in prison, in urgent need of medical treatment. Amnesty reports that he may be held solely for being part of the Zaidi community, and at risk of torture and ill treatment. The Arabic daily, al-Shoura, also reported on children in prison; the youngest listed is 9-year-old Aref Mosa al-Qusi. His condition is “wounded.”
So one at a time if need be.

The Arabic on the petition is a translation of the English Amnesty Statement. The petition affirms the concern of Amnesty and calls for medical treatment and release if indeed is "a prisoner of conscience, held solely for being part of the Zaidi community."

More from Amnesty: Though he was reportedly not directly involved, Ibrahim al Saiani was reportedly injured by shrapnel during the clashes in Sa’da, north of Yemen, between government forces and followers of Hussain Badr al-Din al-Huthi, a cleric from the Zaidi community. His right arm is said to have been amputated, a piece of shrapnel is lodged in his skull, and he has an injury to his right leg. He is said to be completely dependant on his family to carry out daily activities.

So please consider signing THIS PETITION. I endorse it 100%.