Western Pressures on Yemen to ‘Shape [Archives:1997/45/Front Page]

November 10 1997

Several Western Governments have sent clear messages to the Yemeni authorities that they are not happy with the way the regime has been handling human rights and civil liberty issues. Let us give examples: a) The Edinburgh Communique of the Commonwealth Heads of Governments Meeting (24-27/10/1997) refused Yemen’s application for membership, citing ineligibility given the record on democracy and human rights. The Commonwealth decided to “keep (the application) under review in the context of the criteria endorsed by it”. b) A meeting of the EU Foreign Ministers last month noted the deteriotating human rights and civil liberties conditions in Yemen. A decision was taken to dispatch a senior Swedish official to Sanaa on this matter. He will arrive on 14/11/1997. c) Recent US State Department announcements called on Americans in Yemen ‘to maintain a high state of awareness concerning their personal security’, given the threats received.