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General Corruption, Rule of Law

INSAN report 2010 – #Yemen – Born to Slavery – The Government may consent

INSAN 2010

Yemen has already ratified the 1956 United Nations Supplementary Convention on the Abolition of Slavery. In addition, Article 24 of the Yemeni Constitution guarantees equal rights to all citizens, and under Article 29 of the very same document, forced labor is strictly prohibited. Article 248 of the Yemen Penal Code criminalizes and sentences any person who owns, gifts, or trades in slaves to a maximum of 10 years in prison. Nevertheless the Yemeni government has failed either to respect its own Constitution, act upon its very own law or to comply with international law on this matter. Unfortunately, there may be strong indications that the Yemeni government may indeed have consented to slavery, and that it may have been complicit with such crime. Furthermore the government have violated Yemeni citizens constitutional rights to citizenship, family, marriage and the right to possess property, whilst discriminating against them by denying services granted to other citizens and, above all, by failing to protect them against slavery. Absurdly, Yemeni citizens who were formerly slaves before being released by their ex „Masters‟ in many cases still do not have any kind of identification card nor are they included in the social security system. The problem of lack of official identification still continues, with stories of former slaves being granted cards to be able to vote in local elections but, paradoxically, failing to obtain proper national identification.

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