Amnesty International today condemned the actions of Yemen’s security forces after they beat protesters with sticks and reportedly shocked them with electric batons amid ongoing demonstrations inspired by protest movements in Tunisia and Egypt.
Security forces in uniform and plain clothes attacked a crowd of some 2,000 people protesting peacefully in Sana’a yesterday and also appear to have beaten protesters in both Sana’a and Ta’izz today.
“We are appalled by these reports of vicious attacks on peaceful protesters by security forces. Yemen needs to rein in its security forces immediately and stop excessive use of force,” said Philip Luther, Amnesty International’s Deputy Director for the Middle East and North Africa.
Human rights activist and lawyer Khaled al-Ansi told Amnesty International security forces attacked him with electric shock batons during yesterday’s demonstration in Sana’a and he heard other protesters screaming “Electricity!” as they were beaten.
“Security forces in Yemen cannot be trusted with electric shock batons, given the persistence of torture in the country. They can be too easily misused,” said Philip Luther.