American citizen appeals to US embassy to help [Archives:2003/671/Opinion]

September 25 2003

By Saleh. M. Qaid Al-Hajjaji
I am an American citizen currently living in Yemen, where I am facing some difficulties. I have tried to contact the US embassy to assist me recently but I never got any positive response.
Former US Ambassador to Yemen, Ms. Barbara Bodine was quite helpful in my case and I wish the current Ambassador, H.E. Edmund Hull would follow suit. Ms. Bodine had issued an official letter from the embassy and it was forwarded to the governor of Ibb concerning my case. However, since she left office, the issue was never followed up.
In brief, my issue is about a piece of land that has been confiscated from me in 1997. For more than four years I have been pushing hard for the issue to be resolved and for my property be returned but to no avail.
The land is located in Ibb City and it was confiscated without my knowledge or permission.
I hoped that I could use the land to start an investment that would benefit the people in the area, but I never had the chance to do so because the land was taken away forcefully.
I have approached local authorities, parliament, judiciary, and the presidential office, and I did get so many orders to have the land returned, but none of the orders were implemented.
I appeal to the US Embassy to interfere in getting things going again. I was promised that the US government will look after me and do its best to defend my rights wherever and whenever possible. I now believe it is high time to get support from my country and see that my rights are given back to me.
I hope that the US embassy to Yemen will respond positively, just as it did in the past. The embassy can indeed do a lot for its citizens, especially when they are exposed to human right violations, and face problems that cost them morally and financially.
I know they will do their best in helping me out.
I will be waiting for their helping hand.