Hafidh freed before one day of his execution [Archives:2007/1099/Front Page]

November 1 2007

By:Amel Al-Ariqi
TAIZ, Oct. 31 ) Taiz security authorities released on Wednesday Hafidh Ibrhim, 19, after a court cancelled a his death sentence.

The court's verdict to cancel Ibrahim's death sentence was announced just one day before his execution.

Ibrhim's case was one of the cases that raised public attention. Human rights groups were also worried about the case as he was only 16 years old when he was convicted of killing Sadiq Ismael Radman, who was also 16 years old. Radman belongs to the southern province of Taiz

The Primary Court in Taiz sentenced Ibrahim to death in October 2003. however, Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh delayed Ibrahim's execution for three times in order for the relatives of the two children would reach. Radman's relatives reportedly refused to pardon Ibrahim at the time.

“Finally they ( Radman's relatives) accept the blood money to release Ibrhim” said Ibrhim's lawyer Essam Muhmmed on Wednesday.

“Businessman Taufik Abdulrhim paid YR 25 millions to Radman's family that accepted to give up the case”

According to the Yemeni law, the Blood money is YR 5 millions.

The lawyer thanked the non government organizations, local and international press, and the businessman Taufik Abdulrhim who involved and helped “save the life of Hafidh Ibrhim”

Ibrahim's case raised arguments among human rights organizations as well as children's organizations, and rejected the death sentence against him. They claimed that Yemen is breaching the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which Yemen has ratified.

In Yemen executions are usually carried out in prisons by making the offender lie face down on the ground and shooting them through the heart with an automatic rifle.

Amnesty International was particularly alarmed at the intention to execute Hafidh Ibrahim as Yemen has for over a decade recognized the international ban on executing child offenders. In 1994, Yemen outlawed death sentences against those aged below 18 at the time of the crime (article 31 of the Penal Code, Law 12 of 1994).