Qahtan shirt… Obstacles, aggression’s trade and its mercenaries fail negotiations of prisoners

Mercenaries in Marib Refuse to Reveal the Fate of Hundreds of Abductees and Prisoners in Their Prisons.
1200 Civilian Abductees in Mercenaries’ Prisons, Including 18 Women.
18 cases of execution by torture, including three women.

Al-Thawrah / Exclusive Report:
The meetings that were slated for early June have been postponement to an undetermined date due to trade practices by the aggression mercenaries in the prisoner file, particularly in the case of Mohammed Qahtan. The United Nations informed the government of Sana’a that the aggression mercenaries in Marib (Islah) refused to disclose a list provided by the National Committee for Prisoners, which includes hundreds of kidnapped and imprisoned individuals whose fate is being requested to be revealed, in exchange for revealing the fate of Mohammed Qahtan.

Observers have confirmed that the mercenaries’ stance reveals that they are attempting to undermine and obstruct the prisoner discussions by using Qahtan’s case as a negotiating chip.

Observers have pointed out that their refusal to reveal the fate of prisoners and hostages shows their stubbornness in this file, with the aim of hindering the efforts made by the government of Sana’a with the United Nations and other mediators towards making progress in this humanitarian file. Initial agreements reached during the discussions sponsored by the UN that took place in Switzerland stated that Sana’a would reveal Qahtan’s fate, while the aggression and its mercenaries would provide a list of people who had been kidnapped and were being held captive in their jails.

Two days ago, the head of the National Committee for Prisoners confirmed that the meetings that were scheduled were hindered due to the refusal of the mercenaries and the aggression. He held the mercenaries (Islah) responsible for the file’s failure.

Technical and political challenges continue to clog the prisoner file as the aggression and its mercenaries struggle with numerous issues brought on by division, internal strife, and a lack of a clear leadership decision. These disagreements and conflicts have hampered the exchange process.

Due to having to deal with each mercenary faction separately, the national negotiating delegation had significant difficulties when attempting to resolve this issue. In addition to dealing with multiple parties on the ground, the mercenaries in Marib, Al-Jawf, and Taiz each had their own faction and representative; the mercenaries on the coast under Tariq Afash had a different faction; and the Transitional Council had split off from the others. Due to the unique decision-making processes used by each side, this file’s negotiations are complicated.

They were unable to provide accurate data on the names of prisoners they held, and their representatives were unable to make effective decisions in the file. The Islah representative negotiated separately with the National Committee for Prisoners to release only members of the Muslim Brotherhood group, while the Saudi Aggression representative negotiated to release only Saudi soldiers. Tariq Afash and his representative negotiated to release his own relatives and brothers separately, while the mercenaries’ representative in the south negotiated to release their own members.

In addition, thousands of prisoners held by the mercenaries in the army and popular committees were rejected by all parties affiliated with the aggression and its mercenaries and refused to be included among those affiliated with them. The representatives of the mercenaries and the aggression said that they do not recognize these prisoners, despite the fact that they were captured from the border fronts as well as from Nehm and Al-Jawf.

This dispersal, division, and disintegration within the aggression and its mercenaries continuously makes it difficult for negotiations on this file. It is usually extremely difficult to reach agreements between the national delegation in Sana’a and the multiple fronts that are formally under the leadership of the aggression and mercenary factions, unlike the national delegation, which works with a unified decision and negotiates by a single direction and team.

The name dispute continues to be a problem in the negotiations over prisoners, in addition to the conflicts and disagreements between the aggression and mercenary sides. The representatives of the mercenary factions do not always provide complete information and are never able to provide information on the names provided by the National Committee, whereas the National Committee provides accurate and complete data on prisoners held by the army and popular committees to them. The mercenary factions had previously resorted to posting online announcements requesting the registration of detainees’ names and sending them via emails and designated numbers to receive data, the majority of which were incorrect and inaccurate.

While the National Committee for Captives in Sana’a is working tirelessly to free captives and advance exchange procedures, the mercenaries are obstructing and complicating efforts to resolve this case.

Torture and kidnapping of civilians and women:
An estimated 1,200 civilians, including women and children, were kidnapped between November 2021 and May 2023, according to the “Insan” organization for rights and freedoms in Sana’a. It is also stated in its report titled “Crimes and Violations against Civilian Detainees in Aggression and Mercenaries’ Prisons” that the number of abducted civilians in Marib alone exceeds 645.

According to the organization, some civilian detainees have been held since 2016, and both their physical and mental health have gotten worse. Most of them suffer from psychological conditions, and we refrain from mentioning their names.

It established that 18 murders of inmates had taken place in Marib prisons; the Saleh Institute and the political security cells were the most notorious of these. The organization added that the operations of abduction and violations did not only target men but also women and children. Safaa Khaled Al-Amir, who passed away at the military intelligence prison, was one of several female abductees who died as a result of torture in the Marib province.

Raghad Al-Sanani died as a result of torture in the political security jail in Marib, according to the organization, while other women miscarried as a result of brutal beatings, and some are still under torture. The “Insan” organization report on the prisons and detention facilities in Al-Makha and the south stated that statistics showed that 39 detainees were released through prisoner exchange agreements while more than 250 people, including travelers, workers, women, and children, are still being held there.

The report also pointed out that female abductees in these prisons among them Fatima Al-Qahali, Ruqaya Zaid Hussein Al-Jashmi, and Hanan Mohamed Ghamarah.

Ben Ghareeb, military intelligence, central security, political security, criminal investigation, and Al-Saleh are some of the most well-known prisons in Marib where captives are tortured and killed, according to the organization’s report. The organization said, “Through exams of detainees freed from the political security jail, it was discovered that there are numerous diseases, including tuberculosis, and that those in charge of the prison have severely neglected medical care. Different organizations are not allowed to visit the detainees.

Among the violations, the organization mentioned the arrest of healthy civilians, taking them to prisons, merging them with prisoners of war, and bargaining for them in exchange deals.

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