Two Yemenis sentenced to death over spying for Egypt

February 16th, 2008 - 10:50 pm ICT by admin  

Sanaa, Feb 16 (DPA) A state security court in Sanaa sentenced two Yemenis to death Saturday over spying for Egypt by providing its embassy with information about a joint Saudi-Kuwaiti plan to finance terrorist attacks in Egypt, court sources said. Hamad Ali Hamad al-Dhahouk and Abdul-Aziz Hussein al-Hatbani were found guilty of supplying Egyptian diplomats in Sanaa with details of an alleged conspiracy by the governments of Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.

Lawyers defending the two convicts rejected the verdict and said they would lodge an appeal to the State Security Appeals Court.

Prosecutors said al-Dhahouk had met an Egyptian diplomat and handed over to him a “confidential” document issued by the Saudi intelligence services and detailing the alleged plan.

When the trail began in June, al-Dhaouk was the only defendant in the case, but prosecutors added al-Hatbani one month later. They said he had coordinated a meeting for al-Dhahouk and the Egyptian diplomat in Sanaa in March.

According to the document, Yemeni authorities have been aware of the planned training and attacks that would have targeted tourism in Egypt.

Prosecutors have said the information the two defendants tried to sell were misleading and untrue and that the man was motivated by revenge from Saudi Arabia after Saudi authorities stripped al-Dhahouk of Saudi nationality in 1998.

The court’s presiding judge Mohssein Alwan said the defendant’s acts “could damage Yemen’s diplomatic and political position and its relations with Egypt.”

The two defendants denied the charge, saying it was fabricated.

Al-Dhahouk has told the court he got the report from the archive of the Saudi cabinet. He also said he was a brigadier general in the Saudi army before he was dismissed in 1998.

The document’s authenticity was not confirmed by the Yemeni authorities, and did not provide any dates for the alleged conspiracy.

Prosecutors said the Egyptian embassy in Sanaa had reported the details of al-Dhahouk’s meeting with the diplomat to the Yemeni National Security Agency.

He was arrested in Sanaa in late May.

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