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ANHRI condemns storming of "Al-Adwaa" newspaper headquarters, hacker attack on website

(ANHRI/IFEX) - ANHRI strongly condemns the storming, at dawn on 14 June 2011, of the headquarters of "Al-Adwaa" newspaper in Sanaa by Yemeni gunmen affiliated with the government. The gunmen harassed the newspaper's staff members, tampered with equipment and seized a number of computers because of the media outlet's stance against the policies of Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh. The website was also attacked by hackers. The website was hacked into twice previously in a span of less than three months due to news coverage exposing violations by the Yemeni regime of the rights of peaceful demonstrators who have been demanding the president's departure and for his regime to be overthrown.

The human rights situation in Yemen is considered to be declining, especially with respect to press and media freedoms and the right to protest peacefully. A number of Yemeni newspapers have been seized by the authorities and a large number of journalists and media outlets have suffered attacks and kidnapping attempts.

ANHRI said, "The Yemeni regime is used to pursuing a policy of repression. It does not respect freedom of opinion and expression, and has not responded to repeated calls from the international community regarding the poor status of press freedom in the country and the daily violations of the rights of journalists."

ANHRI added, "The Yemeni regime has not yet learned any lessons and the continuing rights violations will do nothing but strengthen the rejection of the president. ANHRI calls on the international community to intensify pressure on the Yemeni authorities to protect the rights of journalists and media staff."

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