Opposition parties attacked [Archives:2004/776/Community]

September 27 2004

Hassan Al-Zaidi
The media campaign against opposition joint-meeting parties is still raging, considering them as being involved in supporting the Sa'ada rebellion led by cleric Hussian Al-Hothi, who was killed 10 days ago. The campaign excludes the oppostion Islah party that stood by the government.
Statements were released last Thursday by an official source in the Ministry of Interior, who declared that the preliminary investigations, and documents discovered by the security forces reveal the extent of the support received by the rebel, which is considered as violation of the constitution and the law.
The same source also declared that the documents and testimonies, which confirm the involvement of local and regional parties in supporting the rebellion, and a list of their names will be submitted to the judicial system to start proceedings against them.
This attack against opposition parties is considered the most violent since 1994 war.
This fierce campaign against opposition parties was launched by President Saleh, in his words to Al-Shura members last week, saying “there were many joint meeting parties supporting Al-Hothi's rebellion except for Islah which stood by the state in the war, as it did in 1994”. The President also warned the involved parties of bad consequences if they do not stop doing such acts.
The state-run Al-Thawrah daily entitled its editorial on Thursday's issue as 'parties of shame' and classified some parties such as Al-Haq and Public Forces Union as having Zaidi views and accused them of ethnical thoughts, viewing the caliphate as being for a certain group of people, and showing hatred towards the republican regime.
The newspaper views the stance of the socialist party towards Al-Hothi as being an extension of that of 1994, when it rebelled against unification, Whereas the Nasserite United Organization is viewed as a party of constant impartiality, and practicing a form of political trade. The newspaper also says that the afore-mentioned parties have to close their rumor shops, or they will be shut down by the constitution, since they do not represent the values of the revolution, unification and democracy.
This comes in the shadow of previous preparations to shut down the centers of these parties and their journals, considering their existence as a violation of the law. These acts resulted in the issuance of a verdict against the Public Forces Union (PFU), the shut down of Al-Shura journal, and the imprisonment of its editor-in-chief, Al-Khaiwani for two years. This comes at a time when Al-Thaqafia journal, belonging to the official Al-Jomhauria press establishment, advocates in a prominent title on its front page “with Al-Khaiwani as a journalist and against PFU – prosecute the devil”
The state is trying to isolate the opposition join meeting parties from the strong Islamist Islah party, because leaving them do whatever they want forms a threat to the government. From another point of view, some party leaderships have shown concern over the procedures carried out by the authorities that are thought of as against democracy and freedom.