Economist, Deceased Person
1952 – 1999
Who was Abdulaziz Al-Saqqaf?
Professor Abdulaziz Y. Al-Saqqaf was a Yemeni human-rights activist, economist, and journalist. Saqqaf established the Yemen Times, unified Yemen’s first and most widely read English-language independent newspaper, in 1991, and was the winner of the N.P.C.'s International Award for Freedom of the Press for 1995. He was also a leading economist at the state-owned Sana'a University. He won the lifetime Achievement Award of the 2006 Middle East Publishing Conference in recognition of his efforts in promoting freedom of the press in Yemen and in the region. Dr. Saqqaf was killed in 1999 when he was hit by a car. Despite appeals by Dr. Saqqaf's heirs to re-open an investigation into the accident due to indicators that it may have been a carefully coordinated assassination, the authorities in 1999 refused to do so, resulting in a withdrawal from the trial proceedings against the car driver. Saqqaf's elder son Walid and younger daughter Nadia, who currently runs the Yemen Times, have mentioned on more than one occasion that they believe the accident was orchestrated due to their father's frequent critical writings against the former president of Yemen Ali Abdullah Saleh.
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