Yemenis voiced their anger over an article by Mohammed Ali al-Houthi, the head of what’s called the Supreme Revolutionary Committee of the Houthi militias, published by The Washington Post on November 9, a move considered an editorial drop for the newspaper, especially that the Houthi top leader is described as a “war criminal.”
Yemeni human rights activist and journalist Hamdan Alaly told Al Arabiya English that the article penned by Mohammed al-Houthi was particularly shocking for the Yemenis, especially journalists, who suffer greatly from injustice and violations practised against them by the Houthi militias.
He added that Mohammed al-Houthi is one of the top figures of the Houthis and the second in rank in the pro-Iranian militias who is implicated in issuing directives for killing more than 26 Yemeni journalists, while there are 16 journalists till this day in detention centers.
Alaly said that the Houthi militias have practised human rights violations against journalists, kidnapping and torturing more than 160 journalists in many Yemeni provinces during the past four years.
The Yemeni human rights activist and journalist expressed his shock how a prominent newspaper like The Washington Post could publish and promote an article for such person who claims that he wants to establish peace in Yemen.
Alaly said that Yemenis denounce this move by The Washington Post as “it is promoting a gangster in Western society who is identified with terrorist groups.”
He continued his criticism of The Washington Post saying: “Mohammad al-Houthi should be classified as a terrorist leader” and not be provided a platform in an international newspaper.
The Yemeni journalist revealed that he was one of the journalists who had been driven out of the country by the Houthi militias and that hundreds of Yemeni journalists have fled the country in fear for their lives.
He added that the Houthi violations and crimes against the Yemeni people are happening under the pretext that they are agents of America, saying: “We are being killed, oppressed, forced to migrate and leave our homes because we are accused of following America and this is a fact that the Washington Post’s staff must understand.”
Alaly questioned whether the Washington Post’s staff was aware of their mistake in publishing this article when no Yemeni or Western newspaper have published his article or even an article on his life. “It is shameful and disgraceful, ” he said.
For its part, the Yemeni Foreign Ministry considered Washington Post’s move to publish an article written by Mohammed al-Houthi as a shame, describing the writer as a “war criminal”.
The Yemeni Minister of Foreign Affairs, Khaled al-Yamani, said in a tweet: “Who would have imagined that a war criminal such as Mohammad Ali al-Houthi would fabricate a language of peace in the Washington Post?,” Iran’s agents have begun to find their way to the American press.”
He added: “What a shame!”
Mohammed al-Houthi wrote in the Washington Post that: “The continued escalation of attacks against the port city of Hodeida in Yemen by the US-Saudi-Emirati coalition confirms that the American calls for a ceasefire are nothing but empty talk.”
He added that: “We love peace- the kind of honorable peace… We are ready to stop the missiles if the Saudi-led coalition stops its airstrikes,” in reference to the Houthi ballistic missiles fired toward Saudi Arabia.
The article published in the Washington Post comes at the time when a major offensive by the Yemeni legitimate forces backed by the Arab coalition is going on to seize for control of the strategic Yemeni port city of Hodeidah.