Ethiopian naval and civilian refugees [Archives:2004/725/Local News]

April 1 2004

In a letter addressed to the President of the republic of Yemen, and copies to the prime minister, the minister of interior, the minister human rights, the UNHCR and the UNICEF Ms Habiba Hussein an Ethiopian national says Ethiopian Naval and Civilian refugees came to Yemen 13 years ago to seek asylum. They were accepted by Yemen and handed over 14 warships to the Yemeni government upon arrival.
Around 200 refugees had been involved in the sit-in protest in front of the UNHCR office in Sana'a since Feb. 10 to get a solution for their problems. On 20 March 2004, The Yemeni policemen used force to end their sit-in by beating and injuring the respected ex-Naval Officers and Civilians. Additional to this their families who arrived there to know where about their husbands and relatives are, were beaten and jailed even with their children instead of to go to school, which is not expected from the neighboring country, particularly from Yemen. Currently there are some infants and children who are living alone in danger and in bad conditions as their fathers and mothers are jailed. UNHCR also closed its office who is responsible for refugees to help in such conditions. Taking into consideration our historical and blood link, I kindly apply to the Yemeni government to let free them ASAP and to push UNHCR to resume its duty in a proper way.