Over 330,000 children educated in secret religious schools [Archives:2005/835/Local News]

April 21 2005

Yemeni prime minister Abdul Qadir Bajamal said last Saturday that around 330,000 children are being educated in underground schools uncontrolled by the government.

“With the teachers, we will confront the reactionary and backward culture in Marran and the Al-Muzamat mountains,” Bajamal said, referring to the area where security forces quashed a two-week uprising last week by followers of the former MP and radical preacher Hussein al-Houthi. He vowed to eliminate those schools that are thought to be dominated by religious parties that promote the extremist interpretation of Islam

“We are not against religious education. We are free people, but we are against extremism, fanaticism, tribalism and sectarianism,” Bajamal said.