January 5-11: UN officials report on ceasefire implementation, Houthis launch drone attack on government base

Saturday, January 5

Independent journalist Baseem al-Jenani reported that four factory workers were injured in al-Hudaydah when their factory was shelled. He also described Houthi practices in Hudaydah of repressing local community organizations and NGOs and looting their assets.

Sunday, January 6

President Trump has confirmed that Jamal al-Badawi, one of the al-Qaeda operatives responsible for the 2000 attack on the USS Cole in Yemen, was killed in an airstrike in Marib Governorate on January 1.

Monday, January 7

The UN Secretary General's report was released on the implementation of the Stockholm Agreements as of today. The report notes that the Houthis have delayed the opening of key roads, and mutual ceasefire violations have been reported but not verified by the UN. Meanwhile, the Houthis have also failed to issue visas and clearances for UN personnel and equipment intended for Hudaydah. Meetings continue to be held with both sides.

PBS sheds light on the impact of Yemen’s war on the country’s children, reporting from Yemen’s largest orphanage, Dar Ri'ayat al-Aytam in San’a. This organization is home to approximately 400 Yemeni boys who have been orphaned by the conflict or whose parents were forced to abandon them.

Al-Masdar Online reports on the death of prisoner Mohammed Abdallah al-Shatr, who passed away after three months of torture by Houthi militias. In government-controlled Aden, meanwhile, al-Masdar focuses on the ongoing hunger strike by detainees at Bir Ahmed prison, whose demands include being brought to trial for charges against them, and release for those prisoners who have not been charged with crimes.

Tuesday, January 8

Luke Hartig, a research fellow at New America and former National Security Council official, discusses the Department of Defense’s recent report to Congress on counterterrorism efforts in cooperation with the UAE, saying that the DoD, in claiming no involvement in or knowledge of the abuse of detainees in Yemen, ignores the findings of journalists as well as human rights organizations such as Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and the United Nations. Hartig states, “in a mere two pages of carefully parsed prose, the Department of Defense (DoD) has provided what can only be described as a deliberately misleading and deceptively evasive account of U.S. and Emirati actions in Yemen that amounts to the ultimate non-denial denial.”

Wednesday, January 9

Al Jazeera reports that UN Envoy Martin Griffiths met with President Hadi in Riyadh in an effort to strengthen the ceasefire in Hudaydah. The Guardian, meanwhile, reports that Griffiths expressed optimism on the future of the conflict in Yemen since the signing of the Stockholm Agreements last month, while calling for greater momentum in the agreement’s implementation.

Middle East Eye reports on the journey of six-year-old Buthaina al-Raimi, whose family was killed in a Saudi air strike. She was then reportedly forcibly relocated to Saudi Arabia along with her uncle and cousins, and held under house arrest for over a year until a recent prisoner exchange between the Houthis and Saudi Arabia.

Independent journalist Baseem al-Jenani shared a video showing houses that have been destroyed by Houthi attacks south of Hudaydah. He says that Houthis have been systematically destroying civilian homes in the cities of Hays and al-Tahayta.

Thursday, January 10

A report from ReliefWeb focuses on the upcoming elections to form voluntary Food Management Committees in Dimnat Khadir district of Ta’iz, home to a large number of internally displaced persons. Women have reportedly been encouraged to participate in these elections and take up leadership positions.

A drone attack by the Houthis on a government base reportedly wounded 12 people and killed six soldiers. According to Houthi news outlet al-Masirah, the attack on al-Anad base was targeting “invaders and mercenaries,” a reference to Saudi-led coalition personnel, and used a new type of drone designed to detonate in midair. Mohammad al-Houthi, President of the Houthis’ Revolutionary Council, tweeted in apparent response to these events, noting aggression by the Saudi-led coalition and their lack of adherence to the Stockholm Agreements, and stressing the Houthis’ commitment to the agreement. The Office of the Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for Yemen, meanwhile, tweeted their concerns over the escalation of violence in the country.

Medicins sans Frontiers reports on the issue of Houthi-laid mines, the victims of which have primarily been Yemeni civilians, often children. MSF calls for increased mine-clearing operations in the country in hopes of mitigating this threat to civilian lives.

Friday, January 11

A southern newspaper reports clashes between two Houthi factions in Ibb province.

Al-Masdar Online reports that 18 people were killed and wounded by Houthi shelling of a gathering in Hajjah province.