I have received word this morning that two people, one whom I know, have had direct phone contact with Karim Chrobog, son of former German Foreign Ministry State Secretary Juergen Chrobog, who both along with three other family members have been kidnapped by Yemeni tribal clans.
While Karim Chrobog told both people that he and his family are well, even though they are being held against their will, he hoped that they would be released soon.
However, a dispute between two tribal clans about them has broken out, and the Chrobogs were moved this morning — reportedly for their saftey — when a group of armed men in several helicopters arrived in the area where they are being held.
This is an email I received today from a source whom I should keep anonymous:
I wanted to also let you know that I have just received an email from XXXX on the XXX film telling me that he spoke with Karim at 8.45 this morning – Yemen time.
Karim was calm and collected and he said he and family were all safe and sound, being treated as guests (even if involuntary ones) and awaiting an early release in sha Allah. Only a short call, but what a relief . . . ok just had this emailed interupted by a phone call FROM KARIM.
He does sound calm and collected. He said that they are being looked after well but are not able to leave. He said that it is complicated — that it is a feud between two tribes that they are in the middle of.
They are being looked after well but he doesn’t know when it will be over. He said that there was a moment of tension this morning when helicopters arrived and they were taken up to the hills — for their protection.
I asked him if there was anything I can do and he said that he
is not sure but the more people that know about this the better.
Karim Chrobog and the Chrobog family have been important allies to many throughout the Arab world who have felt exploited or demeaned by Western nations.
The Yemeni tribes should consider carefully what they are doing to hurt their political cause by holding against their will people who many in the Arab world feel are great friends.
— Steve Clemons