Many Yemeni expatriate workers in Saudi Arabia have been exposed to a lot of maltreatment as a consequence of the war waged by the War Coalition led by the US, Saudi Arabia and the UAE against Yemen. Some have been abducted and forcibly disappeared, while some others have been unlawfully killed or executed.
A’. A’. (16 years old) has taken responsibility of the family since his father left them to Saudi Arabia. The little boy is still below the normal working age. However, severe circumstances have forced him to face the challenge of work, as well as the burden of searching for his lost father, who has disappeared for a long time. The boy does not want to give more details about his family, which consists of his mother and six brothers. This fatherless family, who are living in the countryside of Ibb governorate in central Yemen, want only “to know the fate of their father who has been absent and missing for more than three years.” Despite his young age, Waseem kept asking many of his father’s acquaintances about his secret disappearance. He sent photos of his father through social media, pleading and requesting if anybody could hopefully help him find any information about his lost father. He used to write and send posts: “This is the photo of my lost father. Please help me find my father.”
“My father used to work in Riyadh in a vegetable store, and he used to send us money regularly, and ask about us every week, sometimes every day. Suddenly, we lost contact with him; and we don’t know what happened to our father,” Waseem recounts sadly.
Being the breadwinner of the family, he had to drop out of school since the father’s disappearance, when he was in junior high school. Then, he started looking for work to support his family. To secure his family’s daily expenses, Waseem uses a bike to transport passengers through the streets Ibb city and the narrow alleys of its old city. Waseem continues to work in this job, despite its risks for a child of his age. Any traffic accident would result in dire consequences for this simple family, who derive their sustenance from the efforts of this noble boy. Waseem, who has not seen his father for 6 years, hopes to find him anywhere and under any condition. “We want my father, alive or dead … His absence tortures us every day,” Waseem says despondently.
Waseem posted his father’s photo on the social media pages of some activists; he feels very happy and hopeful to see someone helping him in looking for his father. However, he insists that nobody should mention the names of his family and brothers through media means. Waseem and his siblings are still waiting hopefully to receive any information on the fate of their father, who has been forcibly disappeared. However, they have not yet learned anything about him till the moment.