HOOD and Alkarama sent a delegation of lawyers to the city of Jaar, in Abyan province, which is currently ruled by Ansar al Sharia and was renamed the Emirate of Waqar on Thursday 22 March 2012. The visit allowed the team of lawyers to interview the 73 soldiers held by the group, and observe their health and detention conditions. The team found that they seemed to be treated well and were allowed to communicate with their families, but the Ansar Al Sharia continues to call for the release of members of the group detained in the prisons of the Yemeni Political Security forces in exchange for the release of the captured soldiers.
Despite the soldiers having been detained for nearly two months by Ansar Al Sharia and an increasing number of captured soldiers following the recent fighting, the Yemeni government has until present done nothing to ensure their release. It however appears that the lives of these soldiers are at great risk, whether from the possibility of being subjected to bombardment by US aviation or executed by their captors.
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