Yemen: Journalist on death row denied medical treatment
The Huthi de facto authorities are denying Tawfiq al-Mansouri, one of four journalists detained since 2015, who was sentenced to death in April in Sana’a, life-saving medical treatment amidst his critical health condition and appalling detention conditions.
Lynn Maalouf, Amnesty International’s Deputy Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa, said:
“The Huthi de facto authorities’ denial of urgent medical treatment for seriously ill journalist and activist Tawfiq al-Mansouri is an act of cruelty that violates the prohibition of torture and other ill-treatment.
“Since his detention and due to terrible detention conditions, he has suffered chronic illness including; diabetes, kidney failure, heart problems, prostate inflammation and asthma. More recently we received worrying information that he contracted COVID-19 in June, and that since October, his health condition has further deteriorated as he is being denied crucial treatment for his heart problems.
The Huthi de facto authorities’ denial of urgent medical treatment for seriously ill journalist and activist Tawfiq al-Mansouri is an act of cruelty that violates the prohibition of torture and other ill-treatment.
“He should never have been imprisoned in the first place, let alone sentenced to death. Pending his overdue release, al-Mansouri must immediately be granted access to the medical care he so desperately needs by doctors of his choosing. We further call on the Huthi de facto authorities to immediately quash the death sentences issued to the four journalists after an unfair trial, to drop all pending unfounded charges and to release them without delay.”
In April 2020, a Huthi-aligned court in Sana’a sentenced four journalists – Tawfiq al-Mansouri, Akram al Walidi, Abdelkhaleq Amran, and Hareth Hamid – to death on trumped-up charges including “spying for Saudi Arabia.” Together with six other journalists subsequently released, they had remained detained, without charge or trial, from 2015 to 2020, and were sentenced following a grossly unfair trial. During this time, they were forcibly disappeared, held in intermittent incommunicado detention and in solitary confinement, and deprived of access to medical care. At least three of them were subjected to torture and other ill-treatment.
The four journalists have been suffering from a range of medical issues, including stomach and colon pain, hemorrhoids and other conditions which have not been properly diagnosed or treated. Tawfiq al-Mansouri additionally suffers from diabetes and heart disease.
Amnesty has extensively documented how the Huthis use the judicial system to stifle freedom of expression, association and religion by handing down harsh sentences, including the death penalty, for exercising these human rights.
Amnesty International has been campaigning for the unconditional and immediate release of the four journalists on death row and invites you to take action here.