Government needs to be aware of suspicious activities [Archives:2008/1123/Opinion]

January 24 2008

By: Abdulfatah Al-Batool
As Yemen's political climate is experiencing sharp tension in the relation between ruling and opposition parties, plus an unprecedented tension between political partners, the National Democratic Institute, or so called (NDI) is operating actively throughout the country's political arena. The American organization moves between premises of political parties and civil community organizations until the extent of making its country Director Peter Dimitroff and other staff members attend political sessions.

The institute is pondered upon as one of the arms of U.S. Intelligence and exercises political activities in the Arab countries on behalf and in favor of the U.S. Intelligence while its presence in the region represents occupation but with a new absolution, according to political analysts and observers.

Amid the frequent movements of NDI in the capital city of Sana'a, the Institute's country director never thinks about quitting his activities after expanding differences and disputes between political parties. Moreover, he turned to instigate women in political parties and NGOs.

At a news conference recently organized by Yemen Female Media Forum, the man expressed his sorrow over the great loss suffered by female candidates who so far stood in the country's previous parliamentary and local council elections because of what he called “treason exercised by parties” that neither remain committed to nor show respect for the code of ethics with regard to their support for women. He is instigating women in Yemen in order to retaliate against these parties and punish them for cheating them in the elections, according to his words.

The matter compelled Ms. Sameera Rajab, member of Bahrain's Shoura Council, who is also a member of the Arab National Conference, to question the state's position and reaction to the U.S. organization's movements and the statements made by its country director. The woman also questioned why Yemen's NGOs and parties don't oppose the NDI activities, nor did they send out a note to the concerned agencies in the government to take a quick action against movements of such a suspicious organization.

She also raised numerous questions about legitimacy of the presence of such foreign organizations in the Yemeni territory, confirming that such a fact doesn't exist in Bahrain because their laws don't allow any suspicious activities. “Such organizations have to be fought since they are the other face of the American and western occupation today in the region via their suggestions for improving democracy and reform”, the leading women reacted.

Regarding Yemen's parties and NGOs strong desire to meet and sit together with NDI staff in Sana'a, Rajab attributed the matter on the atmosphere of frustration on the part of these parties and organizations, mainly as the government makes no attempt to contain demands of political organizations and parties, nor did it try to get closer to the needs of its society and citizens.

According to the woman, illiteracy and oppression of culture make people have strong faith that such foreign organizations may provide them with guarantees, stressing the necessity of Yemen taking quick action to end the role of such organizations in its territory.

On her part, Ms. Jawhara Hamoud, Yemeni Socialist Party Assistant Secretary General for Women Affairs, commented on NDI Country Director's statements saying, “Dimitroff may target other parties because such statements don't apply to YSP and this party is far away from the man's suggestions and remarks.”

She indicated that YSP is an intimate friend for women and supports them lavishly, and that it has no cultural problem toward women's issues. Instead, under this party's rule in South Yemen, women witnessed the best stages of prosperity, attained high social prestige and held senior positions in the government.

Hamoud affirmed that her party assigned 30 percent of its elected staff and election management membership for women, adding that it is discussing the subject of women's candidacy in the different Yemeni governorates.

Source: Akhbar Al-Yaum Daily