Crackdown on Aid Workers in Yemen: Unprecedented Detentions by Houthi De Facto Authorities

Since May 31, 2024, Houthi de facto authorities have detained dozens of Yemeni employees from UN agencies, and international and local NGOs. This unprecedented wave of arrests, described as the first of its kind in Yemen, highlights an alarming crackdown on humanitarian and civil society efforts in the country.

The Houthi de facto authorities allege that these detentions are part of dismantling an “American-Israeli spy network” an accusation primarily targeting former US embassy employees and workers from international organizations detained between 2021 and 2023. These claims have been supported by coerced “confession” videos, which have been criticized for lacking credibility and fairness. 

The recent detentions have intensified incitement against aid and civil society workers, with public campaigns and hotlines urging citizens to report “suspicious activities.” This crackdown threatens the safety and operations of humanitarian efforts in Yemen, with potential further detentions looming.

Human rights organizations and Yemeni activists urge robust advocacy and legal support for the detainees, condemning the lack of effective response from the international community. The Justice4Yemen Pact coalition calls for immediate action to secure the release of those unjustly detained and to protect the vital humanitarian work being carried out in Yemen.

Read the full report:

An Arabic copy of the report is available at:

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