Journalists pay the cost, subjected to terrorBooby-trapped envelope injures al-Nihar Managing Editor [Archives:2005/861/Local News]

July 21 2005

By Yasser al-Mayasi
Yemen Times Staff

SANA'A- Journalist Haj'e al-Jehafi, Managing Editor of al-Nihar Newspaper was badly injured, specifically in his face, on Sunday July 17 when a booby-trapped envelope exploded as it was handed to him.

In a statement to the Yemen Times, al-Jehafi mentioned that while he was working in the newspaper at one pm, an anonymous person telephoned him and told him that wanted to publish a complaint in his newspaper.

“The anonymous person arrived at the newspaper, handed me an envelope and left immediately,” said al-Jehafi. “When I opened the envelope, it exploded, injured me badly and caused me a coma, then I was rushed to the hospital by one of my colleagues and never knew that happened until it was late.”

Al-Nihar Managing Editor confirmed he has no antagonism with any one, and that publishing-related issues caused him along with his colleagues threats by Sheikh Mohammad Ahmad Mansour, a Shura Council member and one of the prominent sheikhs in Ibb Governorate.

He added that he along with his colleagues has been subjected to threats since they published articles criticizing the policy of Sheikh Mansour and the way he treats locals in al-Ja'ashin District.

According to al-Jehafi, he never expected terror to develop to the use of arms against journalists in such a horrifying way. He has shown curiosity over such a technique and using it against journalists and insisted on the Yemeni journalists not keep silent but they should strongly denounce such misconducts that harm democracy and the freedom of the press.

He further called on journalists to not fear such acts of vandalism and to continue their mission, criticize corruption and disclose the facts, however the circumstances are.

The Yemeni Journalists Syndicate (YJS) issued a statement on the incidence and described it as horrifying, particularly since it was plotted against a journalist.

This attack is pondered upon as a dangerous indicator of using violence against journalists and hassling their role reflected in criticizing illegal practices and corruption.

The incidence came after a series of threats against Shihab al-Ahdal, al-Nihar's Editor-in-Chief and Haj'e al-Jehafi, Managing Editor of the Newspaper as well as the other staff members for publishing articles criticizing the illegal practices of sheikhs and influential persons, said the YJS's statement.

The YJS notified the Ministry of Interior and the Office of the Attorney General about the series of threats that culminated with such a tragic incidence.

Al-Nihar Newspaper filed a complaint to Minister of Interior holding Sheikh Mohammad Ahmad Mansour accountable for the assault. The newspaper notified the parties concerned that its staff members received several threats and its managing editor was threatened directly.

A statement issued by the Newspaper urged the concerned authorities to take legal measures against the perpetrators and provide protection for journalists.

It is worth noting that al-Nihar Newspaper has been tried on a case sued against it by Sheikh Mansour over the publishing of articles criticizing the arbitrary conducts and oppression Sheikh Mansour practices upon his locals.

The YJS organized on Wednesday July 20 a sit-in pulling together a large number of journalists to express their denunciation over threats and attacks on al-Nihar staff members.