Yemen, January 29, 2024

The Women's Solidarity Network closely follows the grave violations of international human rights law targeting human rights defender Fatima Saleh Al-Arouli, including recent threats to her family of her imminent execution in February without exhausting

fair trial procedures, orchestrated by non-legitimate entities.

On December 5, 2023, the Houthi Ansar Allah group issued a death sentence against her through the specialized criminal court in Sana´a (an unconstitutional and unauthorized

court), following her conviction on charges laid against her. These alleged charges

included espionage with the United Arab Emirates, receiving funds for that purpose, as

well as accusations of impersonating another woman. Her lawyers were denied access

to meet her or attend trial sessions.

These charges against Al-Arouli, who heads the Shelter Organization for Human Rights

Development, were arbitrarily assigned, reflecting retaliation against her human rights

work, including advocacy for women´s and children´s rights.

The Houthi Ansar Allah group persistently exploits the specialized criminal court to

settle political scores, blatantly violating the right to life through extrajudicial

executions, summary proceedings, or arbitrary actions.

Al-Arouli was arrested on August 14, 2022, at the Houban checkpoint while traveling

from Sana´a to the interim capital, Aden, and subsequently detained by the Security and

Intelligence apparatus, which has kept her imprisoned since then, isolating her from the

outside world and depriving her of basic rights such as meeting her family and lawyer.

On August 22, 2023, relevant UN working groups on arbitrary detention and enforced

disappearances, as well as UN special rapporteurs on freedom of opinion and

expression, peaceful assembly, and association, issued a communication demanding a

response from the de facto authority (Houthi Ansar Allah group), affirming that the

enforced disappearance and detention of human rights defender Fatima Saleh Al-Arouli

is a clear retaliation against her efforts to promote and protect human rights. They

called for her release and additional clarifications, to which the de facto authority has

not responded so far.

The Women´s Solidarity Network calls on international and regional human rights

mechanisms under the United Nations, the European Union, as well as influential states

in Yemen and international organizations, to pressure the Houthi Ansar Allah group and

urge them to:

Cease the use of the death penalty against human rights defenders, particularly women,

and immediately halt all extrajudicial executions, summary proceedings, or arbitrary


Completely stop violations related to enforced disappearances and release all arbitrarily

detained prisoners.

Overturn the death sentence issued against human rights defender Fatima Saleh Al-

Arouli, release her, and cease the threats received by her family.

Issued by the Women´s Solidarity Network

January 29, 2024