GERMAN KIDNAPPED [Archives:2001/22/Front Page]

May 28 2001

A German student was kidnapped near Al-Tahrir Square, downtown of Sana’a City at 5:15 pm Saturday and was whisked away towards Mareb.
Carl Christian Hoerencke, 25, an English language teacher in one of the institutes in Sana’a is also a student at the Center for Arabic Language and Eastern Studies. He was kidnapped by armed tribesmen belonging to Al Ali bin Falah tribe of Jahm located at Dhamja, 80 km west of Mareb City and 150 km north east of Sana’a City.
The kidnappers demand the release of six members of their tribe currently serving a prison term in the Central Prison of Dhamar City for the last two years and 4 months. They were found guilty of kidnapping Faisal Muthanna Omar, Head of the Committee of the Supreme Court to review challenges of lower court decisions. The court sentenced the six men to have their feet and hands severed for their crime. The kidnappers told Yemen Times that they would not release the hostage unless the six tribesmen are released or unless guarantees for their immediate release are given. They claim that Faisal himself has given up his contention in the case and has forgiven the kidnappers, who have a written document to prove this. This led to the kidnap of Carl in what is called in tribal terms “tribal complaint”.


Yemen Times met with the victim and took his photos in the area where he was kidnapped and delivered two letters he wrote, one to the German Ambassador to Sana’a and the other to his family in Germany (both shown). He seemed to be in excellent health. When asked how he was kidnapped, Carl said, “at around 5:15 pm when I was walking along the street in Sana’a, five armed tribesmen attacked me and took me to their vehicle and drove extremely fast on bumpy roads to what seems to be a remote area. I am currently in good health and would like to assure my friends at the institute that I am OK and will come back safely very soon.”
When asked about the length of his stay in Yemen, he said. “This is my fifth month in Yemen where I teach English and study Arabic as well.”Carl added, “I do wish that my family doesn’t know that I have been kidnapped, and in my letter to them I have not mentioned that I have been kidnapped.”Security forces sprung to action yesterday morning to surround the area where the victim is supposed to be kept in confinement.
It is worth noting that the 5 kidnapped Yemeni teenagers (see issue no. 20), who were kidnapped three weeks ago are still held hostage in an area near the village where the German national is supposed to be kept a hostage.