First Published: 2009-06-14

 
Rebels kidnap nine foreigners in Yemen
 

Nine foreigners kidnapped in restive Saada region by Shiite rebels fighting Yemen government.

 

Middle East Online

Caught up in conflict

SANAA - Nine foreigners, mostly women and children, including seven Germans, a British engineer and a South Korean woman teacher, have been kidnapped by Shiite rebels in Yemen, officials said.

The group were seized in the restive Saada region of north Yemen by rebels who have been fighting the government in Sanaa for five years, said a local authority official, cited by the defence ministry news website September Net.

The German group includes a couple, three children and two women nurses, according to the official, who did not say when they were taken hostage.

They belong to an international organisation which has been working at a hospital in Saada for the past 35 years, the official said.

No-one has yet claimed responsibility for the kidnapping.

The official said they were taken hostage by members of the Huthi Zaidi rebel group which have been fighting the government since 2004.

Tribesmen often use kidnapping to twist the government's arm in local disputes. More than 200 foreigners have been abducted over the past 15 years, but in all the cases, the hostages have been freed unharmed,

The exception was for three Britons and an Australian seized by militants in December 1998 who were killed when security forces stormed the kidnappers' hideout.

The government and Huthi rebels signed a Qatari-brokered peace deal last June but there has been repeated wrangling about its implementation.

The insurgents are known as Huthis after their late commander, Hussein Badr Eddin al-Huthi, who was killed by the army in September 2004. Hussein was succeeded as field commander by his brother Abdul Malak.

Shiite Zaidis are a minority in the mainly Sunni Yemen but form the majority in the northwest.

 

Moscow seeks to boost its influence in Kurdistan through oil

Tillerson does not expect Gulf crisis to be resolved soon

35 Egyptian police killed in Islamist ambush

How Raqa recapture affects complex Syrian war

Ancient Turkish town set to vanish forever under floodwaters

Ceremony marks 75 years since WWII Battle of El Alamein

Somalia attack death toll rises to 358

Long road ahead for families of jailed Morocco protesters

Israel hits Syrian artillery after Golan fire

Germany advances Israel submarine deal after corruption holdup

Bashir Gemayel's killer convicted, 35 years later

SDF hails 'historic victory' against IS in Raqa

Hamas delegation visits Iran

Turkish court orders release of teacher on hunger strike

Yemen rebel youth minister urges children to join war

Iran's Guards show no intention of curbing activities in Mideast

EU will cut some money for Turkey as ties sour

Iraqi workers return to oil fields retaken from Kurds

Kurdish disarray shows resurgence of Iraq's army

Iranian military chief visits frontline near Syria's Aleppo

Iraq army takes last Kurd-held area of Kirkuk province

Turkey issues arrest warrants for 110 people over Gulen links

Lebanon approves first budget since 2005

Hamas calls US unity comments ‘blatant interference’

OPEC chief pleased with oil market rebalancing

Turkish police detain leading civil society figure

G7, tech giants meet to tackle terror online

Iraq’s Kurdish regional government open to Baghdad talks

Tensions flare among Yemen's rebels

Baghdad court issues arrest warrant for Iraqi Kurd VP

Erdogan, Nigerian counterpart to ramp up cooperation

Russian medics operate on Yemen's Saleh despite embargo

Baghdad condemns oil deal between Russia’s Rosneft, Kurds

Power shifts again in Iraq's multi-ethnic Kirkuk

Syrian general accused of journalist deaths killed in Deir Ezzor

Raqa liberators ready for civilian handover, on to next battle

Revolutionary Guards say Iranian missile program will continue

Erdogan calls on three major mayors to resign

ICC investigating several war crimes in Mali

Erdogan says may shut Iraqi border at any moment

Tunisian couple jailed for 'public indecency' over car kiss

Next round of Syria talks at end October

Gazans hope Palestinian reconciliation ends their woes

PSG's Khelaifi to be quizzed in Swiss World Cup probe

UN urges de-escalation in Iraq