An unidentified French journalist (pending notification of next-of-kin) was found strangled with an electrical wire in his guest room at the Al-Maali Hotel in the Yemeni capital of Sana'a earlier today (January 2). When found, the victim was firmly tied to the guest room bed, suggesting that there may have been multiple assailants.
The hotel, Al-Maali, is near the presidential palace in an area controlled by Yemen's Republican Guard, an elite force commanded by the son of President Ali Abdullah Saleh. The unit has been battling renegade troops and armed tribesmen for months, as domestic and international efforts persist in getting Saleh to step down.
COMMENT: According to the Committee to Protect Journalists (http://www.cpj.org), 45 journalists were killed in 2011. Unfortunately, given the deficiency of the Yemeni police service and coupled with political turmoil, it is unlikely that the journalist's assailant(s) will be brought to justice. Nevertheless, this posting will be updated as information becomes available.