Yemeni court overturns death sentence of Iranian spies

 Yemeni court overturns death sentence of Iranian spies
# 25 March 2013 22:04 (UTC +04:00)

Baku-APA. A Yemeni security court on Monday overturned the death penalty against two Shiite rebels who were convicted of spying for Iran during 1997-2008, the official Saba news agency reported, APA reports quoting Xinhua.

The court revised the death sentences against defendants Abdulkarim Lajy and Hani al-Madaneen to five years prison term starting from the date of their arrest.

The death penalty was ruled on May 25, 2010 against the accused over charges of collaborating with Iran, collecting sensitive information of Yemeni military and security facilities and delivering them to the Iranian embassy in Sanaa during the period 1997-2008, Saba said.

Yemen has witnessed since 2004 sporadic battles between government troops and the Shiite Houthi rebels, which the government accused of seeking to re-establish the clerical rule that was overthrown by the 1962 Yemeni revolution that yielded the Yemeni republic.

The conflict ended on Feb. 11, 2010 with a ceasefire agreement between the government and the Shiite rebels.

On Jan. 23, 2013, Yemen arrested eight Yemeni Shiite sailors while they were trying to smuggle a 40-ton weapon shipment allegedly from Iran to Yemeni southern coasts.

The Yemeni government accused Iran of being behind the shipment which it said aimed to harm the Yemeni national security. However, the Iranian government denied the accusations.

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