To install click the Add extension button. That's it.

The source code for the WIKI 2 extension is being checked by specialists of the Mozilla Foundation, Google, and Apple. You could also do it yourself at any point in time.

Kelly Slayton
Congratulations on this excellent venture… what a great idea!
Alexander Grigorievskiy
I use WIKI 2 every day and almost forgot how the original Wikipedia looks like.
Live Statistics
English Articles
Improved in 24 Hours
Added in 24 Hours
Show all languages
What we do. Every page goes through several hundred of perfecting techniques; in live mode. Quite the same Wikipedia. Just better.

Slavery in Yemen

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Although slavery is recognized as being illegal around the world by international treaties and conventions, evidence has shown that there is still existing slavery in Yemen, and the number of slaves is in fact growing. Slavery affects and inhibits many basic human rights, and was specifically abolished by Yemen in 1962. That slavery is alleged to still exist is a major human rights issue.

Yemen is in Southwest Asia, and is a mostly Arab country. Yemen is considered a developing country, and has been in a state of political crisis since 2011. An investigation conducted as a joint effort by local press in Yemen, human rights activists and the wider media uncovered an array of evidence strongly suggesting slavery is still alive in Yemen, with a former slave who had recently been freed admitting other members of his family were still being used as slaves. In this in depth investigation, that was done over a period of several months, slave owners admitted to selling slaves to countries such as Brazil and Saudi Arabia for significant amounts of money, suggesting that the problem of modern slavery goes far deeper than just Yemen. It was also discovered that not unlike previous times, slaves were inherited by their owners through family, as well as being bought and sold.

The slaves are under complete control of their owners, an example of this being that although sometimes the slaves are allowed to marry one another, they are not allowed a ceremony, and are only allowed to see each other during an emergency or at night when their owner does not require them. In a sense, slavery has even been formally recognised in Yemen, through a judge in the Courts confirming the transfer of a slave from one owner to another. This caused an outcry by the community and the media, which was allegedly quickly hushed by the government.[1]

YouTube Encyclopedic

  • 1/4
    1 002 525
    348 822
    115 550
    70 248
  • Slaves in Italy? | DW Documentary
  • Soccer World Cup: Migrant laborers in Qatar | DW Documentary
  • Slavery: A Global Investigation (Modern Slavery Documentary) | Real Stories
  • Yemen - kids and the war | DW Documentary


History of slavery

13th-century slave market in Yemen.

A Chinese non-Muslim man had a female Indonesian who was of Muslim Arab Hadhrami Sayyid origin in Solo, the Dutch East Indies, in 1913 which was scandalous in the eyes of Ahmad Surkati and his Al-Irshad Al-Islamiya.[2][3]

In the 1760s the Yemeni Hadhrami Arab Syarif Abdurrahman Alkadrie mass enslaved other Muslims while raiding coastal Borneo in violation of sharia, before he founded the Pontianak Sultanate.[4]

In 1869 the Royal Navy was enforcing a ban on slave trading in the Gulf of Aden and intercepted over 100 Galla slaves that were illegally shipped to Aden from Berbera. Soon after more slaves were discovered at Siyara and Lieutenant Colonel Playfair with the steamer 'Lady Canning' implored the Makahil elders to surrender the slaves. Upon their refusal the Lady Canning would open fire shooting deliberately near the important fort of Siyara. This act of intimidation led the elders to oblige and free the slaves held in the area.[5]

The port town was later on described as being under the possession of the Habr Je'lo:[6]

“The last branch of the Western tribes is the Haber el Jahleh, who possess the sea-ports from Seyareh to the ruined village of Rukudah, and as far as the town of Heis. Of these towns, Kurrum is the most important, from its possessing a tolerable harbour, and from its being the nearest point from Aden, the course to which place is N.N.W., consequently the wind is fair, and the boats laden with sheep for the Aden market pass but one night at sea, whilst those from Berbera are generally three. What greatly enhances the value of Kurrum however is its proximity to the country of the Dulbahanta, who approach within four days of Kurrum, and who therefore naturally have their chief trade through that port.

Part of Yemen was controlled by the British Empire in the 19th- and 20th-century in the form of the Chief Commissioner's Province of Aden (1839–1932) and the Colony of Aden (1937–1963). The British Empire, having signed the 1926 Slavery Convention, was obliged to fight slavery and slave trade in all land under direct or indirect control of the British Empire. However, the British control of Yemen was not complete even in the part of Yemen which was nominally controlled by them. The Colony of Aden was divided into an eastern colony and a western colony. Those were further divided into 23 sultanates and emirates, and several independent tribes that had no relationships with the sultanates. The deal between the sultanates and Britain detailed protection and complete control of foreign relations by the British.[7] This limited their actual power to do something about slavery.

In 1936, the British authorities in Aden filed a report about the slavery in Yemen. The British raport had information of between 5.000 to 10.000 slaves in a population of three million.[8] The majority of the slaves were either trafficked from Africa, or born to enslaved Africans in Yemen, and a small minority of the slaves where Caucasian.[9] Most of the male slaves were Africans, occupied in agricultural work or as soldiers. [9] Egypt and Hejaz were also the recipients of Indian women trafficked via Aden and Goa.[10][11] Since Britain banned the slave trade in its colonies, 19th century British ruled Aden was no longer a recipient of slaves and the slaves sent from Ethiopia to Arabia were shipped to Hejaz instead.[12]

The British, obliged by the 1926 Slavery Convention to abolish all practice of slavery in the British Empire, did not abolish the slavery as an institution in Yemen, but managed to free many slaves by buying them, manumitting them, and relocating them within the British Empire.[8]

Abolishment of slavery

The worldwide abolition of slavery began in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, when the Declaration of the Rights of Man was adopted in 1789, and stated “men are born and remain free and equal in rights.” By the nineteenth century, an increasing number of countries such as The Netherlands were banning participation with the African Slave Trade, and soon after abolished slavery in all of its colonies, along with France. By the 1900s, abolition of slavery was spreading globally, with countries such as Burma and Sierra Leone following the movement.[13]

After World War II, there was a growing international pressure from the United Nations to end the slave trade in the Arabian Peninsula. In 1948, the United Nations declared slavery to be a crime against humanity in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, after which the Anti-Slavery Society pointed out that there were about one million slaves in the Arabian Peninsula, which was a crime against the 1926 Slavery Convention, and demanded that the UN form a committee to handle the issue.[14]

In 1962, Yemen was one of the last countries worldwide to abolish slavery. Besides this, Yemen is also a member state of the United Nations.[15] All United Nations member states are subject to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), which specifically says in Article 4, that “No one shall be held in slavery or servitude; slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms.[16]” This declaration outlines basic rights that all human beings are entitled to. The rights outlined in the declaration become legally enforceable, since they define the terms ‘fundamental freedoms’ and ‘human rights’, which themselves feature in the United Nations Charter. All member states of the United Nations are legally obliged to comply with the United Nations Charter.[17]

Besides this, the Slavery Convention 1926 also exists, which at its creation aimed to prevent slavery, and the slave trade. It specifically defined what slavery and the slave trade were, and all participants agreed to prevent, and gradually eliminate all slavery that existed within their country, and also to create penalties for anyone found to be slave trading, or involved in the control of a slave. As of 1987, Yemen became a party to this convention, meaning they agreed with the aim of it, and agreed to the obligations it imposed upon parties.[18]

While not all slaves in Yemen were of African origin, there developed racist stereotypes in Yemen associating black skin with slavery, and this contributed to a discrimination of people with African origin also after the abolition of slavery.[19]

Modern day slavery in Yemen

For someone to be considered a slave, they must fit into one of the following four categories: 1) Be threatened, either physically or mentally, to work. 2) Controlled or owned by another person, through either threats, or abuse that is physical or mental. 3) Treated as a chattel, bought or sold as property, dehumanised. 4) Restrained physically, or has limitations on freedom of movement.[20]

It has been reported that two main types of slavery currently exist in Yemen. The first is general human trafficking, which can be defined as adults or children lured into a situation that results in their exploitation, by way of threats, violence or deliberate misrepresentation, and then forced to perform certain jobs.[21] The second type is those who are not subject to trafficking, but instead still endure slavery and abuse. Such abuse has been reported to be depriving slaves of a basic right of access to water, unless their owner permits it.[22]

Children are extremely vulnerable to slavery in Yemen, as any children of existing slaves are also destined for a life of slavery, and also children are often forced to work for minimal, or even no pay, in the agricultural sector. The legal age for children to begin work in Yemen is 14, and the minimum age they can begin work that is considered to be hazardous is 18. However, in 2012, it was found that 13.6% of children aged 5 to 14 were working across several sectors, though the most predominant sector involving children was found to be the agricultural sector, which incidentally is also one of the most hazardous sectors.[23]

As well as child slavery, it has been discovered that there are also adult slaves who are controlled by their owners, who work in private homes, made to perform certain tasks.[1]

Causes of modern day slavery

A likely cause of the existing slavery in Yemen with regards to the illegality of it, is the extent of the poverty within certain communities. Abdulhadi Al-Azazi, a member of the team investigating slavery in Yemen, suggested that because of the levels of poverty, affected people may enable themselves to be controlled by wealthy people in order to have a better quality of life than what they can provide for themselves.[22]

Another possible factor in the existence of slavery in Yemen is government corruption, as slavery is easy to get away with, and no real steps are taken to put a stop to it, which is what was seen in the investigation mentioned earlier in this article. Besides this, the slavery cycle is difficult to get out of when there is no government intervention, or real awareness by the public and other countries as to what is going on, which is part of the cause of slavery in Yemen. If people aren’t aware of what is happening, they cannot do anything about it. The slavery cycle has been described as poverty, followed by slavery, then as a result lack of education, and therefore no kind of freedom at all. This means any children of existing slaves are led to believe the same as their parents – that they are not entitled to freedom and they must do as they are told by their owners.[24] In 2019, during the Yemeni Civil War, there were allegations of the Houthis supporting the restoration of slavery.[25]


See also


  1. ^ a b Al Jazeera World. "Slavery in Yemen". Retrieved 27 November 2015.
  2. ^ Natalie Mobini-Kesheh (January 1999). The Hadrami Awakening: Community and Identity in the Netherlands East Indies, 1900–1942. SEAP Publications. pp. 55–. ISBN 978-0-87727-727-9.
  3. ^ السودانيون والعلويون Al-Sūdānīyūn wa'l-'Alawīyūn الارشاد Al-Irshād (Al-Irsyad, Al-Irsjad, Al-Irshad) October 14, 1920 pp. 2-3
  4. ^ Clarence-Smith, W. G. (2006). Islam and the Abolition of Slavery (illustrated ed.). Oxford University Press. p. 44. ISBN 0195221516.
  5. ^ Cyclopædia of India and of Eastern and Southern Asia, Commercial, Industrial and Scientific: Products of the Mineral, Vegetable and Animal Kingdoms, Useful Arts and Manufactures, Volume 5, p.425
  6. ^ Society, Royal Geographical (1849). The Journal of the Royal Geographical Society: JRGS. Murray. p. 63.
  7. ^ Don Peretz The Middle East Today p. 490
  8. ^ a b Suzanne Miers: Slavery in the Twentieth Century: The Evolution of a Global Problem, p. 304-06
  9. ^ a b Suzanne Miers: Slavery in the Twentieth Century: The Evolution of a Global Problem, p. 261
  10. ^ Brown, Jonathan A.C. (2020). Slavery and Islam. Simon and Schuster. ISBN 978-1786076366.
  11. ^ "Slavery and Islam 4543201504, 9781786076359, 9781786076366".
  12. ^ Ahmed, Hussein (2021). Islam in Nineteenth-Century Wallo, Ethiopia: Revival, Reform and Reaction. Vol. 74 of Social, Economic and Political Studies of the Middle East and Asia. BRILL. p. 152. ISBN 978-9004492288.
  13. ^ "Slavery in History". Retrieved 27 November 2015.
  14. ^ Suzanne Miers: Slavery in the Twentieth Century: The Evolution of a Global Problem, p. 310
  15. ^ "United Nations Member States". Retrieved 27 November 2015.
  16. ^ "The Universal Declaration of Human Rights". Archived from the original on 2009-05-03.
  17. ^ "The Universal Declaration of Human Rights". Archived from the original on 2011-09-25.
  18. ^ "Slavery Convention". Retrieved 27 November 2015.
  19. ^ Magdalena Moorthy Kloss (2023) Race and the legacy of slavery in Yemen, History and Anthropology, DOI: 10.1080/02757206.2023.2164927
  20. ^ dotMailer. "Anti-Slavery – What is modern slavery". Retrieved 27 November 2015.
  21. ^ dotMailer. "Anti-Slavery – Human Trafficking". Retrieved 27 November 2015.
  22. ^ a b "New report finds slavery present in western Yemen". Yemen Times. Retrieved 27 November 2015.
  23. ^ "Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor – Yemen". Retrieved 27 November 2015.
  24. ^ "Causes and Effects". Retrieved 27 November 2015.
  25. ^ "Exclusive – Houthis Restore Slavery in Yemen".{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
This page was last edited on 28 August 2023, at 14:00
Basis of this page is in Wikipedia. Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 Unported License. Non-text media are available under their specified licenses. Wikipedia® is a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. WIKI 2 is an independent company and has no affiliation with Wikimedia Foundation.