middle east

Nine men sentenced to death by ‘crucifixion and stoning’ for alleged sodomy by Houthi court

Nine men were sentenced to death by a Houthi court in Yemen in a mass trial based on “dubious” charges of sodomy, a human rights organization has said.

The Houthi movement, officially known as Ansar Allah, is a Shia Islamist political and military organisation which emerged in Yemen in the 1990s. Houthi militants control large parts of the country, and are known to persecute LGBTQ+ folks using arbitrary arrest, torture, rape and other forms of sexual violence, threats and harassment.

The trial, which allegedly took place on 23 January, saw 32 men sentenced. Nine of them were handed death sentences that include crucifixion and stoning, whilst 23 were sent to prison for periods of up to 10 years. Three of these men were also sentenced to public flogging.

Commenting on the situation, Yemen and Bahrain researcher at Human Rights Watch Niku Jafarnia called the mass trial an “abhorrent disregard for the rule of law”.

“The Houthis are handing down death sentences and subjecting men to public mistreatment without a semblance of due process.

“The Houthis are using these cruel measures to distract from their failure to govern and provide people in their territories with basic needs.”

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