Houthi rebels have banned Whatsapp in an apparent crackdown on freedom of speech, Gulf Eyes reported on Tuesday.
Since the September 2014 coup which forced Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi into exile, the Houthis have been in control of the major governmental institutions which are situated in the Yemeni capital Sana’a.
The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, which is under the control of the Houthis, has previously banned various websites and applications including photo sharing application Instagram and instant messaging application Telegram have also been banned.
The ministry banned civilians in Yemen from accessing dozens of news websites and all websites with an Israeli domain with the help of Canadian company Netsweeper, it was revealed last year.
Journalists and activists are also subject to persecution by Houthi and Saleh coup forces, further perpetuating the violations on freedom of speech.
Yemen has been locked in a bitter battle between Shia Houthi fighters allied with forces loyal to ousted President Ali Abdullah Saleh and government forces led by President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, along with local tribes and resistance forces backed by the Saudi-led coalition’s airstrikes.