Houthi militias in the Dhamar governorate in central Yemen have been forcing prisoners to pay money for food.
According to well-informed sources, Houthi militias provide small and dirty amounts of food and water to prisoners thus forcing them to take money from their families in order to buy clean food and water.
They also said that Houthis collect around 150,000 Yemeni riyals a day ($6) which is around 4.5 million Yemeni riyals a month from Dhamar’s central prison, adding that they make a similar amount from other prisons in the city.
However, Houthis do not use the money for the intended purpose and instead they dispatch gunmen to the market and force shops and restaurants to give them food for free under the slogan of “military effort.” The Houthis thus distribute the money collected among their supervisors.
Sources also said that Houthis torture prisoners on a daily basis and put “mentally ill” men in overcrowded cells to blackmail them so they pay money to be released or not to be tortured.
They added that there are more than 150 prisoners in the Dhamar central prison and over 200 others in secret prisons in the city.
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