Berliner Zeitung Correspendent Arrested 4 Germans Still in Captivity [Archives:1998/51/Front Page]
There is a new development in the case of the four Germans kidnapped by the Bani Dhabyan tribesmen. Mr. Sadek Hamaiel, correspondent/photographer of Berliner Zeitung, was able to get through the security siege and interview the four hostages and their kidnappers on Wednesday, December 16th. On his way back, the next day, he was stopped by government security check-points. As his car tried to get away, there was an exchange of fire in which one of his escorts was hurt. Mr. Hamaiel and the wounded escort were arrested.
He is in the custody of the Ministry of Interior.
Meanwhile, there was a show of force by the government on Wednesday, as the deadline the President had set for the release of the hostages went unheeded. Tribesmen say that their villages were shelled.
Sheikh Ahmed Obad Shuraif, sheikh of sheikhs of Bani Dhabyan, invited key notables of his tribe to discuss a way of out of the dead end. “Many of my tribesmen filled up my house in Sanaa as they flee government forces trying to arrest them. The government has decided to arrest anybody who belongs to this tribe,” he told the Yemen Times.
The kidnappers forwarded a 4-point list of some 20 demands for releasing the hostages.