Cutting, looting, and levies.. The specter of death haunts the returnees to Yemen in the deserts of Al-Jawf and Marib

English - Wednesday 08 March 2023 الساعة 02:42 pm
Aden, NewsYemen, exclusive:

Many Yemeni expatriates returning home after the Houthi militia, Iran's arm, closed many of the main paved roads, are forced to take rugged desert roads, extending from the border crossing point to the areas they live in.

A arduous and tiring journey that extends for days in those roads that are not without dangers that may cost the expatriate his life.  Continuous movement between several rugged desert and dirt roads of more than 300 kilometers between the governorates of Marib and Al-Jawf and the border crossing point.

A number of expatriates and land bus drivers explained to "NewsYemen": that dozens of cars, trucks, and mass transit buses break down from time to time between the dense sands of the desert lines linking the "Al-Abr" port in Hadramout and "Al-Hazm" in Al-Jawf and the city of Ma'rib.  Some of them got stuck between the sands because of its density and it is difficult to get them out except through rescue operations by bulldozers or by four-wheel drive cars, and this increases the suffering of travelers and forces them to spend the nights in those isolated areas far from residential areas.

 And the dangers of travelers while traveling through the desert lines increase with the presence of mines and explosive devices planted by the Houthi militia in those areas.  These explosive ordnances killed and injured hundreds of passengers as they entered booby-trapped areas.

 According to expatriates and drivers of international transport companies, Houthi mines are not the only threat, as there are armed gangs that intercept travelers and loot their property and money, and threaten to kill and steal their cars.

They pointed out: Lots of looting and robbery by armed gangs were recorded on the desert and dirt roads extending from Al-Abr, Marib and Al-Jawf.  Despite the operations of reporting these gangs, the security and military authorities in the liberated areas did not move a finger, which encouraged the gangs of interdiction and muharaba to continue their terror and targeting of travelers returning to the homeland.

The travelers mentioned to "Newsyemen": "Many families and the elderly have increased their suffering on the desert lines, given that they are devoid of rest stops, gas stations, and groceries, and there is not even a place for them to sleep. Many cars and trucks were also seen parked on the desert road between Al-Jawf and Ma'rib, which  its owners need help."

 They warned of the dangers of drivers and families traveling without a road guide.  Many are threatened with loss in the deserts of the Empty Quarter, Marib and Al-Jawf, and the lack of a guide puts their lives at risk and death.

They expressed their dissatisfaction with the Houthi militia's imposition of illegal levies on travelers and trucks without providing any compensation for serving travelers, but rather causing them to double their suffering and burdens on their shoulders.

Citizens and motorists appealed to open the main roads between Marib and Al-Jawf, which have become a daily obsession for travelers and disrupt people's interests.

Tens of thousands of Yemeni expatriates in Saudi Arabia return to Yemen annually, amounting to 7 thousand people per month, according to data from the International Organization for Migration.

The number of returnees is increasing, especially before Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha, due to the expatriates visiting their families and spending the Eid holidays in their country, Yemen.

The remote and rugged roads led to serious accidents and threatened the lives of thousands of travelers, the latest of which was a sudden fire that broke out in a mass transit bus that was traveling on the road linking Al-Abr-Al-Jawf Road, eastern Yemen.  On board were Yemenis coming from Saudi Arabia.

Travelers shared on social networks a picture of the bus burning in the Ruwaik desert, which connects Al-Abr and Al-Jawf, without any injuries among the passengers.

The bus was passing through one of the alternative routes due to Iran's arm cutting off the main roads leading to Sana'a.

The pictures show the burning of the bus in the middle of the desert area and its catching fire, and the passengers lost all their belongings, and they fled from the bus to save their lives.