Al-Sahwa [Archives:2008/1172/Press Review]

July 14 2008

Thursday, July 10, 2008
Top Stories

– Leading Yemeni journalists describe court verdict against comedian Al-Qarni ni as 'political'

– JMP Parliamentary block insists on investigating Taiz police for attacking MP

– Interior Minister confirms to Parliament that wanted terror suspects arrested via telecom centers

– U.S. Administration refuses naming Houthis as 'terrorists' due to inadequate evidence

The United States has expressed its concern over worsening human situation in Sa'ada as a result of ongoing fighting in the restive governorate, the weekly reported, adding that American officials in Sana'a urged both conflicting sides to let food, fuel and other necessities reach affected civilians.

According to the weekly, an American official affirmed the authenticity of reports saying that the U.S. refused to designate Al-Houthis among terrorist movements, pointing out that such designation is a complicated process requiring adequate evidence that an individual or a group is involved in terrorist acts.

As for the Yemen-U.S. relations crisis, the U.S. official said that his administration still believes that Jamal Al-Badawi , the mastermind of the 2000 bombing of USS Cole bombing that killed 17 American sailors and Jaber Elbaneh , a Yemeni-American convicted of planning attacks on oil installations in Yemen, should be handed over to its judiciary.

On a side note, the weekly quoted the Associated Press as reporting that U.S. and Yemen remain at odds over a proposal to release more than one-third of the detainees from Guantanamo Bay, even as the Bush administration wrestles with the future of the military prison.

About 100 of the approximately 270 prisoners remaining at Guantanamo Bay are Yemeni nationals. A U.S. delegation visited the capital city of San'a last week to discuss the possible transfer of a few detainees to Yemen. Yemeni officials hoped to negotiate the release of all but the most dangerous prisoners.

The negotiations with Yemen hinge on what will happen to the detainees once they are returned to Yemen. The Bush administration wants to be sure that dangerous prisoners are not freed and that prisoners are held in humane conditions. Yemen proposes charging some detainees in its court system and supervising others as part of a “rehabilitation program.”