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Houthis set to release over 100 government prisoners in Yemen after postponement

May 26, 2024 at 9:13 am

A man carries a weapon as people attend a graduation ceremony for cadet, completed their military training under the name of “Aqsa Flood”, organized by the Houthis, in Arhab district of Sana’a, Yemen on February 4, 2024. [Mohammed Hamoud – Anadolu Agency]

Yemen’s Houthi rebels are set to release around 100 prisoners belonging to government forces on Sunday, after being postponed by a day.

In an announcement yesterday, the head of the Houthi Prisoner Affairs Committee, Abdul Qader al-Murtada, revealed that the militia planned to release over 100 prisoners in a so-called “unilateral humanitarian initiative” on Saturday.

According to Al-Murtada today, however, the release has been postponed to Sunday, with the delay apparently being the result of “technical reasons” which were specified.

The planned release comes at a time when peace talks between the Houthis and the Yemeni government – along with the Saudis and the United Nations – have advanced significantly over the past year and a half, with prisoner exchanges and releases being a key component of those negotiations.

Hundreds of prisoners from both sides have been released until now, with the last major release having taken place in April last year during an exchange of 250 Houthis for 70 members of government forces.

READ: Regional tensions slowing peace efforts in Yemen: UN special envoy