Police Attack School Girls ugly [Archives:1997/48/Front Page]

December 1 1997

When Yemenis talk about police brutality, they never thought it would come to this. Last week, security forces of the Republic of Yemen beat up our teenage school girls. They attacked the school, and for a full day placed it under siege. They fired shots in the air to frighten the girls, used tear gas, water cannons, and batons against them. At last count, seventy two school girls were hospitalized. These primitive behavior of men wearing government security uniforms against Zaid Al-Moshiki Girls’ School in Taiz is un-acceptable. The ‘soldiers’ were ordered to use force against the 12-15, year-old girls, whose only crime was to support a good principal, Ms. Galeelah Shuga’a. Everybody – parents, students, teachers, and even the helpless Minister of Education – agree she is a good principal.
The problem between Ms. Shuga’a and director general of the education bureau in Taiz started last year. The directorate-general of education in Taiz, controlled by religious zealots, ordered all principals to require the girls to put on the veil and totally cover up. Taiz families, quite liberal, resisted at first, but eventually all schools except Zaid Al-Moshiki succumbed. Hence the battle and last week’s attack. Full story in Report Page