Yemen: Joint statement by OHCHR and UNESCO on two detained staff members


The Director General of UNESCO, Ms Audrey Azoulay, and Ms Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, continue to be deeply concerned for the well-being of two of their staff members who were detained in early November in Sana’a, Yemen. No communication from the UN has been possible with the staff members since that time.

Although the two staff members remain in custody, the UN has not received information about the grounds or legal basis for their detention, or their current status, despite earlier assurances by the Ansar Allah movement (who are also called Houthis) of their immediate release.

OHCHR and UNESCO recall the privileges and immunities accorded to staff of the UN system under international law, which are essential to the proper discharge of their official functions, and call for the staff members’ immediate release without any further delays.


Media contact: Clare O’Hagan,