Education International has brought its full support to Hilal Akrout, a teacher unionist, as well as all education workers arbitrarily detained in Yemen, and demands respect for the fundamental human rights and freedoms of the people of Yemen.
In a letter dated 8 October, the Education International (EI) General Secretary Fred van Leeuwen brings to the attention of the UN Human Rights Council the situation of Hilal Akrout, a member of the EI-affiliated Yemen Teachers Syndicate (YTS), who was arrested on 31 August 2015, while he was performing his duty as school director in Sabaa School in the Thawra educational district, in the Sana’a Province. Akrout has been detained without charges since. Education International and the YTS are “extremely worried about his condition and the violence and ill-treatment he may face while in detention,” van Leeuwen explains.
Education International therefore calls on the UN Human Rights Council to:
· Take any possible steps to ensure the immediate release of Hilal Akrout and all other education workers arbitrarily detained;
· Document all violations faced by education workers while in detention; and
· Call on all parties to stop the attacks against civilians and particularly against education institutions, students, teachers and education in general.
Education International continues to monitor the situation in Yemen closely.
Education International firmly deplores the devastating impact of the ongoing conflict on civilians – especially children and education workers – and on education in Yemen. According to UN sources, 3600 schools were closed, 400 being directly affected by the war. Millions of children do not have access to a safe school environment. Many teachers have been threatened, kidnapped, tortured or displaced; a number of them were killed.