Gunmen linked to Houthi rebel group detained a local journalist and five activists after a raid on an apartment in the capital Sana’a on Saturday, activists said, the latest detention of a reporter in the country.
The gunmen stormed the apartment at dawn and took journalist Nabil al-Sharabi and the activists to an unknown location. The rebel fighters fired their guns when the men attempted to escape, activists said.
Sharabi, the detained journalist, had worked for local daily Akhbar al-Youm, which the armed group closed down after taking control of Sanaa in 2014.
The Yemeni Journalists Syndicate said Houthi rebels have been holding 12 other journalists for several months after accusing them of acting against the movement and of supporting President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi’s government.
Last week unidentified gunmen abducted and later released three journalists and a driver working for Al Jazeera Arabic TV channel in the southwestern city of Taiz.
Yemen is ranked 168th out of 180 countries in the 2015 Reporters Without Borders press freedom index. The group said last week that at least 17 journalists and media workers were being held hostage in Yemen by armed groups including the Houthis.
Human Rights Watch said the rebels have detained numerous political opposition figures, activists, and journalists.