Sana’a – June 12, 2014

Seyaj calls on the government to investigate the participation of hundreds of children in the riots that took place in Sana’a today. It warns of the danger of exploiting children to carry out life-threatening demonstrations.

The Monitoring and Advocacy Center of the Seyaj Organization confirms that hundreds of innocent children, between the ages of 5-15, have been recruited by adults to block main and secondary streets, burn tires, assault passersby, and raise slogans and political symbols. The riots were allegedly held to protest the lack of basic services such as electricity and petroleum derivatives.

Seyaj calls on both the Ministry of Interior and the Public Prosecution to open urgent investigations and bring those involved to justice, with exploitative parents at the forefront, followed by neighborhood leaders, political and social figures, and perpetrators of crimes that threaten the safety of children.

Seyaj reiterates its principled and unwavering stance on children’s right to voice their opinions and the need to listen to and respond to them. However, it stipulates this be done in a civilized and peaceful manner, unlike the demonstrations seen in Sana’a.

Seyaj thanks the Ministry of Interior’s security agencies for their constructive handling of the matter and asks them to deal with child abusers lawfully. It also urges parents not to allow their children to participate in any harmful activities.

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